Children and adults affected by this syndrome encounter social networking problems in maintaining long-term relationships, showing interest only in certain areas and retaining more information about the domain that concerns them.
Even if the brains of people with the Asperger disorder process the sensory stimuli and the information differently, they may have many qualities that can help them lead an independent and fulfilled life. In this situation, their visual attention to details, the honesty, the ingenuity, the originality, a rich vocabulary, ethics and a logic memory could be useful in many professions.
However, unlike those people with autism, the children with this syndrome start talking around the age of 2, which is the age when speech normally develops. Their level of intelligence is normal or above normal.
Both diseases belong to a group of diseases called “Global Development Disorders”, and a recent study from a community of 76,000 individuals in the US has detected that three in 1,000 children are affected by the Asperger syndrome.
The Characteristics of Asperger Syndrome
As we said before, this syndrome is an illness that affects the social interactions, but it can also give limited interests and repetitive behavior. Comparing it with other types of disorders from the autism specter, the Asperger syndrome is not characterized by slow cognitive development or language development. Most of the times, the persons who suffer from the Asperger syndrome have a highly developed language, but they have uncoordinated movements or a delayed motor development.
The Name of the Syndrome
Hans Asperger was an Austrian pediatrician that studied the characteristics of several children with intelligence above medium, in which he identified several traits that he gathered under the name of “autistic psychopathology”. The doctor observed the lack of empathy in his subjects, the low ability to make friends, and the restrictive interests centered on a certain domain about which they could talk for hours.
The syndrome is about the behavioral stereotype, but it’s not a fatal disease, and it can allow someone to live a relatively healthy life.
How It Manifests in Children
Here are some common aspects that can be observed in children that are affected by this syndrome. They have problems in connecting with others, and they can’t make friends of the same age – because of this, they have the tendency to connect easier with adults or with people older than them. Their intelligence is average or above the conventional media. These children initiate conversations on their favorite topic, without noting the lack of interest of the listeners; they don’t look in the eyes of the persons they’re talking to, and the body posture is usually unnatural.
The people affected by the Asperger syndrome don’t show any empathy; they don’t understand humor or irony and they can’t reasonably appreciate the emotions of others. Some of them talk about a funny tone or extremely fast, while others are interested in just one topic and it’s difficult for them to learn something else.
Even if the Asperger syndrome seems easier than the rest of the autistic manifestations, it’s not to be neglected. You need to remember that if you have a child that is affected by this syndrome, even if he or she has a language above his or her age, there’s also the incapacity to explain that the child is hungry or that there’s a pain.
The cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the treatments that work with this illness, as it improves the social skills and the communicational skills. However, it’s not a disease that can be cured completely. The Asperger syndrome is said to have affected many geniuses, like Isac Newton or Nikola Tesla.