Yes, adults have signs and symptoms of Aspergers too. This is because adults too can have Aspergers Syndrome. You may have friends or family members that are adults, possibly older, that have symptoms of Aspergers Syndrome. This is very common in adults, but many do not know they have the disease because they have not been properly diagnosed by a doctor.
Make sure to pay attention to any friends, family members or other adults with signs of Aspergers Symptoms.
It wasn’t until 1994 that Asperger’s Disorder was finally officially added to the Diagnostics and Statistics Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). This occurred with the release of the DSM-IV. Prior to this time the only autism spectrum diagnosis that was available to clinicians was autistic disorder (which was added to the DSM in 1987). Due to this lack of diverse diagnostic criteria, there was a generation of children who grew up with the traits of Asperger’s disorder but were never officially diagnosed with it. It wasn’t until people began to learn more about the various autism spectrum disorders that adults actually began to self-diagnose themselves with Asperger’s.
Symptoms Of Asperger’s Syndrome
Autistic disorder, PDD-NOS, and Asperger’s Syndrome all share similar diagnostic characteristics. Symptoms of Asperger’s disorder include social impairments, restricted interests, repetitive behaviors and strict adherence to rituals and routines. What makes this different from autism is that individuals with Asperger’s may not have experienced delays in language or cognitive development. It is these symptoms that have left these children being described as odd, quirky or socially aloof. However, once Asperger’s was officially added to the DSM-IV as a separate pervasive development disorder, clinicians were able to apply a diagnostic label to these children.
Quirky Adults With Aspergers Signs and Symptoms
These quirky children have grown up to become quirky adults. However, now that information about Asperger’s is more readily available many of Aspergers adults became intrigued by the characteristics of people who have Asperger’s. By reading through a list of the common traits that people with Asperger’s have, some of these people have found themselves actually nodding their head in agreement. For this reason, several online diagnostic tools were created to now help these people truly determine whether or not this is what heir diagnosis should actually be.
The Autism(Aspergers) Spectrum Quotient (AQ Test)
There are now several different online Asperger’s Syndrome tests available. However, the Autism Spectrum Quotient is one of the most well respected. Simon Baron-Cohen, who is a noted Cambridge psychologist and expert in the field of Asperger’s, developed it. He operates the Cambridge Lifespan Asperger Syndrome Service, which is dedicated to meeting the needs of adults who have Asperger’s Syndrome.
The AQ Test features 50 different questions that will help adults evaluate their own autistic traits. Questions on the test address a person’s social aptitude, repetitive behaviors, narrow interests, adherence to routines and other traits that are common amongst adults who have Asperger’s Syndrome. During the first trial period of the AQ Test 80% of adults with an actual autism spectrum diagnosis recorded scores of 32 or higher. So, while this test isn’t actually a diagnostic tool, many adults are able to use it to help self-diagnose themselves with Asperger’s Syndrome. Of course, if you feel as though you may be on the autism spectrum, you should seek an evaluation by a professional who has experience working with adults who have an autism spectrum disorder.
Adults With Aspergers Asserting Themselves
Despite the many challenges of Asperger’s, not everyone perceives it as a disorder. In fact, many people who have this condition actually resent the notion of a “cure.” This was seen in a February 2010 article that was released by the Associated Press. Herein it was reported that the idea of a cure actually angered people with Asperger’s.
The article then went on to say that Asperger’s should actually be classified as a milder form of autism instead of a separate condition. This is because people who have Asperger’s are sometimes seen as the elites, the ones who are socially awkward, yet academically gifted and who embrace their quirkiness. Changing this is oftentimes seen as an attack on their identity.
Asperger’s Adults Learned Coping Skills During Childhood
Many adults who have Asperger’s Syndrome have learned how to cope. While they have a difficult time interacting with others because they don’t understand non-verbal cues or subtle hints and reactions in facial expressions, they have been able to find ways in which to overcome this. Nevertheless, many young people who have Asperger’s are still seen as being rude, thoughtless or seemingly insensitive but this occurs unintentionally because they don’t understand what others are feeling unless the offended individual voices their thoughts.
A lot of this is overcome by adults through years of trial and error. This may even make it possible for the adult to have intimate contact with others. Eventually it is still important to seek out professional counseling, but at the same time many many Asperger’s Syndrome adults will have already mastered many of the skills necessary for social interaction based upon experience before they ever do seek out such counseling.