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how do I get a diagnosis on aspergers syndrome? watch

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    I have most symptoms that i've looked at

    Do I just book an appointment for my GP and ask him for a diagnosis? or do I have to see someone else?
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    You see your GP and your GP will decide whether to refer you to a psychiatrist who will assess you. A GP can't diagnose you with aspergers (is now called Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)). Sometimes there are cases where it is likely that someone has ASD but they won't diagnose because for instance, the person is able to live a life which isn't affected by ASD/the ASD isn't severe enough or because it would hamper their career (e.g. if you wanted certain jobs in the armed forces).

    As a bit of advice, if your GP does refer you please don't do any further reading on ASD. This is because it biases what you say to the psychiatrist. It is much better that you say how you feel etc. in your own terms because the psychiatrist is trained to abstract symptoms from this. The symptoms found on the internet are actually highly specific and many examples which people refer to aren't actually an instance of the symptom. Finally, try not to focus on this too much. There is only so much you can do about this.
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    If you see a psychiatrist for depression or other mental health problems, you can ask them for an assessment without seeing your GP first.
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    http://www.autism.org.uk/15880

    That's the process for adults.

    But, in short, you need to speak to your GP and receive a referral to either a Clinical Psychologist or a Psychiatrist (if you aren't already seeing one).
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    (Original post by OU Student)
    If you see a psychiatrist for depression or other mental health problems, you can ask them for an assessment without seeing your GP first.
    (Original post by River85)
    But, in short, you need to speak to your GP and receive a referral to either a Clinical Psychologist or a Psychiatrist (if you aren't already seeing one).
    I think this depends on the services in your local area. My psychologist said they were unable to refer me and I had to go via my GP.
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    (Original post by Watch Key Phone)
    I think this depends on the services in your local area. My psychologist said they were unable to refer me and I had to go via my GP.
    It might, and some psychologists may not feel they have the right level of experience in assessing people for Autism Spectrum Disorders.
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    (Original post by swagadon)
    I have most symptoms that i've looked at

    Do I just book an appointment for my GP and ask him for a diagnosis? or do I have to see someone else?
    Yes, you just need to see your GP. They will refer you to the right people.

    (Original post by Georg Hegel)
    You see your GP and your GP will decide whether to refer you to a psychiatrist who will assess you. A GP can't diagnose you with aspergers (is now called Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)). Sometimes there are cases where it is likely that someone has ASD but they won't diagnose because for instance, the person is able to live a life which isn't affected by ASD/the ASD isn't severe enough or because it would hamper their career (e.g. if you wanted certain jobs in the armed forces).

    As a bit of advice, if your GP does refer you please don't do any further reading on ASD. This is because it biases what you say to the psychiatrist. It is much better that you say how you feel etc. in your own terms because the psychiatrist is trained to abstract symptoms from this. The symptoms found on the internet are actually highly specific and many examples which people refer to aren't actually an instance of the symptom. Finally, try not to focus on this too much. There is only so much you can do about this.
    Also I have to disagree with this. Reading about the symptoms is not a bad thing. It means you can learn more about yourself and how things might affect you. Especially for people being assessed/diagnosed as teenagers or adults, people have often learnt to mask a lot of the symptoms. I'd recommend reading personal experiences (e.g. blogs) of people diagnosed in adulthood to find out more about which symptoms they didn't notice or had learnt coping strategies, to see if you relate. Also it's worth noting that ASDs often present differently in girls/women, so if that applies to you, try doing some research on that specifically.
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    But by reading up on ASD, it can strengthen your argument for referal and /or diagnosis. When I asked for a diagnosis, I took a piece of paper with my symptoms on, because I can't always explain myself properly.

    According to the GP I saw, they PCT (primary care trust) may not have funding to refer and diagnose adults. And don't be surprised if there's no support after a diagnosis. I wasn't given any support and was just expected to get on with it.
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    (Original post by Watch Key Phone)
    Yes, you just need to see your GP. They will refer you to the right people.



    Also I have to disagree with this. Reading about the symptoms is not a bad thing. It means you can learn more about yourself and how things might affect you. Especially for people being assessed/diagnosed as teenagers or adults, people have often learnt to mask a lot of the symptoms. I'd recommend reading personal experiences (e.g. blogs) of people diagnosed in adulthood to find out more about which symptoms they didn't notice or had learnt coping strategies, to see if you relate. Also it's worth noting that ASDs often present differently in girls/women, so if that applies to you, try doing some research on that specifically.
    (Original post by OU Student)
    But by reading up on ASD, it can strengthen your argument for referal and /or diagnosis. When I asked for a diagnosis, I took a piece of paper with my symptoms on, because I can't always explain myself properly.

    According to the GP I saw, they PCT (primary care trust) may not have funding to refer and diagnose adults. And don't be surprised if there's no support after a diagnosis. I wasn't given any support and was just expected to get on with it.
    I think there is a misunderstanding. I am not saying never do any reading. I am only saying to leave that the psychiatrist should be educating the patient because they will pass on information when the patient is ready i.e. when it won't affect the assessment. So many psychiatrist get annoyed because someone has read something online and it is completely wrong and they think they have a symptom when they've just misunderstood the whole thing. Just research the role of bias in psychiatry. Diagnosis is difficult enough without an inaccurate report from the patient.

    I.e Rosenhan DL, "On being sane in insane places" Science. 179 (January 1973): 250-8
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    (Original post by Georg Hegel)
    I think there is a misunderstanding. I am not saying never do any reading. I am only saying to leave that the psychiatrist should be educating the patient because they will pass on information when the patient is ready i.e. when it won't affect the assessment. So many psychiatrist get annoyed because someone has read something online and it is completely wrong and they think they have a symptom when they've just misunderstood the whole thing. Just research the role of bias in psychiatry. Diagnosis is difficult enough without an inaccurate report from the patient.

    I.e Rosenhan DL, "On being sane in insane places" Science. 179 (January 1973): 250-8
    If you weren't meant to do research before your assessment, then how would you know that an assessment would be beneficial? The more someone learns about the symptoms and different people's experiences, the better they are able to figure out whether/how those symptoms are relevant to them, and the better they are able to explain and put their case to their doctor/s.
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    (Original post by Watch Key Phone)
    If you weren't meant to do research before your assessment, then how would you know that an assessment would be beneficial? The more someone learns about the symptoms and different people's experiences, the better they are able to figure out whether/how those symptoms are relevant to them, and the better they are able to explain and put their case to their doctor/s.
    I think, what he means, is that you may focus too much on that diagnosis, instead of just answering: "Well, I have that symptom, but I really don't think it has the cause in me being too depressed, but I actually am simply not interested in eye contact." (Bad example, but I hope it comes accross.) It is to avoid effects like self-fulfilling prophecy, which has shown that some people will score lower in a test, just because they have been told, that they won't score as high because of their nature (e.g. math tests and being female).
    Having a knowledge of disorders and how psychology works is of course not too bad for the patient, because that can avoid to be totally left alone and dependant by one psychatrist/GP/psychologist. On the other hand, as soon as you have the idea, you should really focus on getting diagnosis and no more do further reading and further reading and further reading. It is really hard not to get lost. Thinking about your symptoms beforehand is of course beneficial. But only about your symptoms, not the other way round, which is more ticking boxes.

    Concerning: How to know, if an assesment is beneficial?
    An assesment is only seen beneficial, in case it causes you problems. Otherwise not.
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    (Original post by Nathanielle)
    I think, what he means, is that you may focus too much on that diagnosis, instead of just answering: "Well, I have that symptom, but I really don't think it has the cause in me being too depressed, but I actually am simply not interested in eye contact." (Bad example, but I hope it comes accross.) It is to avoid effects like self-fulfilling prophecy, which has shown that some people will score lower in a test, just because they have been told, that they won't score as high because of their nature (e.g. math tests and being female).
    Having a knowledge of disorders and how psychology works is of course not too bad for the patient, because that can avoid to be totally left alone and dependant by one psychatrist/GP/psychologist. On the other hand, as soon as you have the idea, you should really focus on getting diagnosis and no more do further reading and further reading and further reading. It is really hard not to get lost. Thinking about your symptoms beforehand is of course beneficial. But only about your symptoms, not the other way round, which is more ticking boxes.

    Concerning: How to know, if an assesment is beneficial?
    An assesment is only seen beneficial, in case it causes you problems. Otherwise not.
    I see your point. But I think it's very unlikely for someone to manage to completely falsify symptoms to the point of receiving an incorrect autism diagnosis. For one thing: what good would it do? A neurotypical person has nothing to gain from an autism diagnosis. If a neurotypical looks up a few symptoms and sees something a bit similar to them, chances are they will leave it at that because they don't see any use in a diagnosis. Whereas if an autistic person finds similarities, they will find that they are learning things about themself and getting explanations for lifelong issues - which will prompt them to do more in-depth research and possibly seek an assessment. I read a quote somewhere that said "If you think you might have Asperger's, you probably do" - and I think that sums it up quite well.

    About assessments. I think that an assessment is beneficial when the individual thinks it is. If someone wants validation, explanation, and help with their problems - then an assessment is probably a good idea.
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    (Original post by Watch Key Phone)
    I see your point. But I think it's very unlikely for someone to manage to completely falsify symptoms to the point of receiving an incorrect autism diagnosis. For one thing: what good would it do? A neurotypical person has nothing to gain from an autism diagnosis. If a neurotypical looks up a few symptoms and sees something a bit similar to them, chances are they will leave it at that because they don't see any use in a diagnosis. Whereas if an autistic person finds similarities, they will find that they are learning things about themself and getting explanations for lifelong issues - which will prompt them to do more in-depth research and possibly seek an assessment. I read a quote somewhere that said "If you think you might have Asperger's, you probably do" - and I think that sums it up quite well.
    I know, but there are people who might just seek a diagnosis, also their problems are rooted elsewhere. So of course you can be assessed, but:
    a) Probably the psychatrist will take a holisitic approach and not test solely on Asperger, but also consider diagnosis with similar effects/symptoms.
    b) A neurotypical can gain an explanation for his behaviour, something he can tell others, instead of just opening up. For some people the fact they have Aspergers may sound more appealing, especially as Asperger won't be treated necessarily, than you are just in the normal variety and have just to concentrate/can't excuse yourself not interacting with other. It really depends. I know, it is not the way you think or I would think or ... BUT that does not mean, others would think the same way.
    c) You can be neurotypical and struggle in the same areas. Especially if you forget to e.g. look back into childhood etc. Being neurotypical does not mean, you can't have an inner struggle seeking for answers.
    d) I am not saying one should not do research if one feels he has a problem, but one should stay honest, search into different directions at the same time and should not self-diagnose before getting a diagnosis.


    (Original post by Watch Key Phone)
    About assessments. I think that an assessment is beneficial when the individual thinks it is. If someone wants validation, explanation, and help with their problems - then an assessment is probably a good idea.
    The thing is, that in general a lot of psychatrist won't give you a diagnosis, if you are not in need of it. And not every Asperger has problems, although he might recognize that the description matches him perfectly. As long someone is fine with his life, there is no need for an assessment, just because he wants an explanation.
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    Why does it matter, if it had affected you, you would have had a diagnosis as a child. Don't self diagnose.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Why does it matter, if it had affected you, you would have had a diagnosis as a child. Don't self diagnose.
    That's not true at all.

    Some people manage fairly well into adulthood, or even well into adulthood, before experiencing difficulties for whatever reason, including that the coping mechanisms they developed just no longer work as well.

    I haven't been diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, but with dyspraxia (and a recommendation that I be referred to the regional specialist for an ASD but this never occurred). I coped well at school, academically and socially, and had close friends. However, after an assault at the age of 16 triggered a mood disorder, and with a change of environment (school to university) I struggle . This is probably because, although I was accepting of social contact and reciprocated, I'm not sure I really initiated it well. Certainly not after the assault. At school you're forced to interact with others more that you are at any other time in your life.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Why does it matter, if it had affected you, you would have had a diagnosis as a child. Don't self diagnose.
    Not true at all. As a female, I am a lot harder to diagnose, plus a few other medical conditions make me harder to diagnose. According to my dad, it was only really obvious once I reached 12. My parents had the additional issue of knowing they'd be accused of lying. Given that throughout my childhood, they claimed there was something seriously wrong with me and were constantly told there's nothing wrong and they're just being hypocondriacs. I am now hopefully finally undergoing treatment for this problem they claimed I had.

    It would also depend on how old the OP was. Aspergers wasn't recognised until the mid 90s.
 
 
 
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