What's autism?

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ihatePE
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like i see that word all the time on TSR, is it common that people on here get? will i have it? omg, and whats ADHD? is that the same as autism? what are all these viruses? WHAT IS GOING ON?
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AngryDragon97
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Autism's a neurological disorder that causes communication and social difficulties.
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GreatApesLearn
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Hi buddy, although i am working on my own maths ideas i currently work as an LSA (Learning Support Assistant) of three years experience so i feel quite qualified to talk about the subject. But lemme be clear on one very big thing: Autism is not a disease, it is not a virus, it is simply a condition.

I remember when i first wrote my letter of interest in applying as an LSA i labelled autism a 'disability' but i couldn't be further from the truth, the autistic child i have worked with these past 3 years is extraordinary.

Also autism as a condition is more a spectrum, it affects different people in many different ways. For the student i work with it means a greatly reduced understanding of emotions both in reading them from other people and coping with his own emotions. Whilst some members of the autistic spectrum build up obsessions with certain subjects of extreme interest to them. So when i first met the student i told him of my interest in doctor who, which i believed to be a common talking point. Because the student was fascinated with doctor who he listed the names and dates of all of the members of doctor who in chronological order, it was then when i first realised that i had been totally wrong to label autism as a disability.

Another important point and common misonception, autism cannot be 'caught'. I believe it's entirely genetic, to be honest i haven't done much digging into where autism stems from as it isn't something nasty to be ashamed of, instead autism lead people to become incredibly more productive than an average member of society. Take Alan Turing, one of the greatest code-breakers to ever live and designed the worlds first programable computer (colussus in bletchley park). He was autistic, and as a result of his undying interest in cracking codes the sheer amount of time and energy he invested into it allowed him to become on the greatest codebreakers ever.

So for me, my purpose as an LSA is to help him read emotions from other people, but also focus on his work and prevent his interests or his obsessions from interfering, and possibly helping encourage him to become interested in a subject that could be highly useful.

If a school works properly with an Autistic child from a young age, then they can help mitigate the bad parts of autism, such as the lack of reading emotions whilst also encouraging the best parts, about branching out the interests, so with my child i would take doctor who, and talk about the wider subject, relativity, time travel, space, it is truly an extraordinary condition and i feel priviliged to be working with such a bright and talented young man who could grow up to be much much smarter than me in the near-future.

Oh and finally, one thing with autism is that those on the spectrum tend to take things literally. So if a teacher says 'pull your socks up' then they might kneel down and pull both their socks up. Or they might give you a look as if you're stupid if you say something such as 'the sky is the limit.' So if you are around somebody who is autistic it is good to be aware of this, and to make it clear when you're joking about something, or they might think you're a bit stupid!

I hope this helps , if anyone disagrees with anything i've put here then feel free to reply to me or PM me and i'll get back to you ASAP.
Also here's to a new year, happy 2016 everybody.
Best regards
FH
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treenyc
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Autism is a condition you are born with, you cannot catch it. It is a triangle of impairments in the following: communication, social interaction and imagination. Examples of how these can affect someone:

Communication. People with autism have difficulty in communicating with others. Their autism may be so profound that they are unable to learn to talk, read and write. They may find communication so stressful that they choose not to communicate, even when they have the ability. An example is elective mutism. They may have the ability to learn a way of communicating specific to them, sign language (usually makaton), key words, flash cards etc. some high functioning individuals can read, write and speak to the same level as people without a disability, but still struggle due to difficulties with social interaction.

Social interaction. People with autism have great difficulty in reading facial expressions and body language, in fact it's downright confusing. Everything is taken literally, so if you say it's raining cats and dogs, they will expect to see animals falling from the sky. So concepts such as humour, sarcasm etc. are very difficult if not impossible for them to understand. Social norms are lost too. This is why someone with autism may not understand that it's not appropriate to strip naked in public for example.

Imagination. People with autism tend to lack imagination. This is why routine is so important. Routine provides familiarity and therefore comfort and security. The unknown is frightening. So thus is why someone might watch the same movie scene over and over or have to have everything in a certain place.

That is a very generalised view coming from working with people with autism for 7 years. Everyone is very different, and their autism will present behaviours, challenges and needs individual to that person. Having autism is being on the autistic spectrum, from very low functioning to high functioning.

ADHD is again something you are born with and do not catch. It stands for Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. In short, it causes inability to concentrate and hyperactivity.
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ihatePE
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(Original post by treenyc)
Autism is a condition you are born with, you cannot catch it. It is a triangle of impairments in the following: communication, social interaction and imagination. Examples of how these can affect someone:

Communication. People with autism have difficulty in communicating with others. Their autism may be so profound that they are unable to learn to talk, read and write. They may find communication so stressful that they choose not to communicate, even when they have the ability. An example is elective mutism. They may have the ability to learn a way of communicating specific to them, sign language (usually makaton), key words, flash cards etc. some high functioning individuals can read, write and speak to the same level as people without a disability, but still struggle due to difficulties with social interaction.

Social interaction. People with autism have great difficulty in reading facial expressions and body language, in fact it's downright confusing. Everything is taken literally, so if you say it's raining cats and dogs, they will expect to see animals falling from the sky. So concepts such as humour, sarcasm etc. are very difficult if not impossible for them to understand. Social norms are lost too. This is why someone with autism may not understand that it's not appropriate to strip naked in public for example.

Imagination. People with autism tend to lack imagination. This is why routine is so important. Routine provides familiarity and therefore comfort and security. The unknown is frightening. So thus is why someone might watch the same movie scene over and over or have to have everything in a certain place.

That is a very generalised view coming from working with people with autism for 7 years. Everyone is very different, and their autism will present behaviours, challenges and needs individual to that person. Having autism is being on the autistic spectrum, from very low functioning to high functioning.

ADHD is again something you are born with and do not catch. It stands for Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. In short, it causes inability to concentrate and hyperactivity.
fanks for the information, some people here are so sensitive they just assume and assume thinking im joking
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treenyc
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(Original post by ihatePE)
fanks for the information, some people here are so sensitive they just assume and assume thinking im joking
No probs
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Tiger Rag
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Google is your friend
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Duke Glacia
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(Original post by Tiger Rag)
Google is your friend
and mine too
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Laurence010401
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As a person with autism, I can tell you that it is NOT a virus lol
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Kindred
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I'm closing this thread because it's old and that gets confusing. If anybody wants to discuss something similar please feel free to make a new thread.

Autism and ADHD are conditions people are born with that affect how their brains work. They are not contagious.
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