Can Autistic People Live On Their Own?

Really high functioning autistic people can. Others might need a little extra support, and moderate to severe or profound autism diagnoses can’t. The worse the autism function level, the more likely the young adult will have to live at home or in a sheltered apartment or group home setting. So the answer here is, yes, and no.

Those with just a mild to moderate level of functioning may be able to learn to do many things for themselves and eventually live on their own with limited support. Only the extremely mild to mild cases can live on their own completely without any support at all, although they might need constant emotional support and connections to friends and family. Severe and profound may learn a few new self help skills in their lifetime, but not enough to live entirely on their own.

For those that can’t live on their own, there are many support programs and non-profit organizations that seek to help them live in the least restrictive environment as possible while maintaining their level of personal safety. Some local, state and county programs can also be of assistance with finding residence programs for the severe to profound adults with autism.

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Can Autistic People Go To College?

can an autistic person fall in love

The answer is, yes, absolutely. Higher functioning individuals are completely capable of understanding college level material in areas that involve cold hard facts. They do very well in mathematics, science, engineering, history, and any field that crosses over between two of these. Some high functioning young adults are even very adept at painting exactly what they see, or writing non-fiction. They generally have to follow their gifted areas and where it leads them.

Some of the most famous people in the world who succeeded in music, art, foreign languages and theatre were assumed to be autistic, but because autism wasn’t a commonly accepted or diagnosed disorder when they were alive, they were just considered “eccentric”. Because many adults with high functioning autism have already established careers and families before discovering that they were on the spectrum, it adds to the credibility that many can lead very normal lives, including college.

It’s also important to note that many who are now just discovering that they are on the autism spectrum but have graduated from college graduated with degrees in the above specified areas. This suggests that, without prior knowledge that they have a disability, they still choose career paths that are logical to the ways their brains work. They continue to be routine and methodical in their learning and have areas that frustrate them and constrain them, yet they still graduate and become most effective in their chosen careers.

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Does Birth Control Cause Autism?

Is conceiving while on birth control or taking a birth control pill a possible cause of autism?

Many people have become curious about the possibility that hormonal birth control could be a contributing factor for autism.  This idea mainly comes from the reasoning that the use of hormonal birth control has become pervasive in the past thirty years and that during this time there has been a boom in autism diagnoses.  Currently, there is no known correlation between the use of hormonal birth control and an autism diagnosis.  This is because there have been no published studies done on the topic.  While there is no conclusive proof that birth control doesn’t cause autism, readers shouldn’t be worried if they’re using their birth control correctly.  Hormonal birth control has been used safely since the sixties and isn’t known to cause problems in children born to mothers who have used it.  The recent surge in autism diagnoses has occurred since the 1980’s.  Additionally, there is some debate as to whether the recent boom in autism diagnoses is more due to “discovery” and diagnosis of more children who are autistic than an actual rise in the disease’s occurrence.

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Can you have autism and mental retardation?

Can someone with autism also have intellectual disabilities (mental retardation)?

Yes, a person with autism can also have intellectual disabilities, also called mental retardation. Intellectual disability is determined by two main factors: an IQ score under 70, and lack of adequate adaptive behavior (the ability to take care of oneself). If a person with autism also displays these limitations, they are said to have both autism and intellectual disability.

It is not uncommon for someone with autism to also have intellectual disability, though the numbers aren’t as high have been claimed. Some sources state that 75% of children with autism also have ID, but according to the Centers for Disease Control, those numbers are incorrect. The CDC reports that of the children who are part of the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, only 48% of them had an IQ below 70. Additionally, a large proportion of those autistic children who do have some intellectual difficulty are only mildly affected. It is relatively uncommon for an autistic child to also have severe intellectual deficiency (around 7%).

It’s important to note, however, that the standard IQ tests may not be the ideal way of testing for ID in children with autism since it assumes some exposure to an academic environment and doesn’t assess life skills.

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Can I get paid to take care of a relative with autism?

A family member with severe autism can require a full-time caregiver at home.  Parents or siblings may miss too much work going to various doctor’s appointments, therapy, and dealing with the many small crises that can come up last minute.  Often it seems the only solution is to stop working and care for your relative full time.  But can you get paid to provide these services?

This is a complicated question and the answer varies depending on the state in which you live.  The first thing you want to do is apply for your relative to receive Supplementary Security Income (SSI) or disability income at your local social services office.  This can provide some income that can alleviate some caregiving costs.  Then, you can apply for in-home services for your relative. Depending on where you live, you can then train to become an in-home services caregiver and get paid a little to take care of your own relative.  Additionally, it is possible that you could get paid to care for your relative through his or her insurance company, if it provides for in-home services for disabilities.

The only way to really know is to find the specific programs your state provides for citizens who need caregivers.  Unfortunately, applying for benefits through state programs can be tricky.  It may help to look for a local autism support group because members may know or take advantage of state services.  Or check Autismspeaks.org about resources available in your state.

Read on, “Assistance For Children With Autism

Is Developmental Dyspraxia On the Spectrum?

Question: Is developmental dyspraxia on the spectrum?

Answer: No it isn’t. It is a separate disorder, a its own and 50% of all cases of dyspraxia are comorbid with ADHD, not autism. A child CAN be diagnosed with dyspraxia and autism but they are not the same thing and are very rarely diagnosed together. Please see a specialist right away for more accurate answer.

Find more articles under Q & A section.

Do Children With Autism Regress?

This question has three parts:

One, the very definition of autism dictates that children with autism suffer from a decreased rate of development in many areas, and even regress a little in others. So the answer is, yes, children with autism regress.

Two, a particular disorder on the spectrum is Crie Du Chat Syndrome, which only affects little girls. In this case, girls develop at a completely normal rate like all other autism spectrum disorders, but the syndrome strikes them much later on than autism normally does. They may appear to be completely normal little girls one day, and start some very odd behaviors the next. Tests for missing chromosome parts confirm the presence of the syndrome, and nothing can be done to stop it once it starts. The girls rapidly regress almost to a newborn state, not being able to speak, perform daily skills, or even take care of their own toileting needs. In this case, again the answer to the question is, yes, children with a specific type of autism spectrum disorder regress.

Three, children with situational problems will often regress, with or without autism being a factor. These cases are very sad because the child has been abused, or because they have suffered some extreme trauma for which help was never sought. In these cases of regression the child with autism will regress, even after lots of hard work to gain skills that were functioning normally. It will be very obvious and the decline is noticeable within a month of the trauma or the start of the abuse. Good record keeping of both the progress in the developmental areas of focus and the sudden onset of decline are vital in showing a doctor that something is wrong.

One final note on this matter: children with other types of autism can learn, grow, gain new skills and lead fairly normal lives without ever losing the skills they obtained. Practice of those skills regularly keeps the memory muscle strong. Not practicing them will look like a regression, when, in fact, it isn’t. High functioning autistic kids do not regress, although emotionally they struggle to behave at a level that fits their chronological age. Usually only additional brain trauma with lasting effects will cause a child with autism to regress, and obviously, that’s with “good” reason.

Ergo, the final result of this question is, yes, in some circumstances they can and do regress, and no, most high functioning or mid-level functioning autistic kids do not regress. If this were a question on a science or child development quiz, it would be viewed as a trick question for all of the above reasons.

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Questions to ask an autistic person

Top 20 questions to ask an autistic person

This is a very sensitive subject. The person with autism should be able to communicate with you and understand what you’re asking for the most part. Your language has to be simple, but not childlike, and concrete. It’s easier to answer yes or no questions, but you won’t get a clear picture of the person you are talking to. The following is a list of questions that might be put to an adult with autism who can communicate verbally.

1. Do you know you have autism?

2. Do you know what autism is?

3. Are there things that really bother you or frustrate/ annoy you?

4. Are there things that you are afraid of?

5. What kinds of things are you really good at? Can you play music or sing, for example?

6. What are your hobbies/ favorite things to do?

7. Do you have a job? What do you do?

8. Where do you live?

9. Do you remember what it was like when you were a kid? Remember what it was like to be a kid?

10. How many friends do you have?

11. Do you have any brothers or sisters? Where do they live?

12. Do you get along with other people? No fighting?

13. Do you find it difficult to spend time with other people?

14. Do you know of anyone else in your family who has autism too?

15. What was it like going to school? Did you get to sit in a classroom with other kids or did you have to go to a room with differently abled kids?

16. What kinds of things do you think are funny? Who makes you laugh?

17. What is relaxing to you?

18. What do you dream about most?

19. What do you do when people make fun of you or don’t have nice things to say about people with autism?

20. What’s the meanest thing anybody ever said or did to you?

Granted, these questions all assume that the person you’re speaking to is less than the higest of high functioning autistic adults, so you may want to match the language level of the person you’re talking to. You just have to remember not to use idioms, similes, metaphors or other comparative forms of speech that an autistic person might not understand or recognize. They might not be interested in engaging in conversation with you either, and those with verbal skills aren’t shy about letting you know that.

You probably won’t recognize that you are speaking to an adult with autism at first without someone telling you. Really high functioning adults fool experts too. If they have verbal skills, they are very good talkers, but might not always talk about the same things you want to talk about nor answer your questions without going off on a tangent of their own. If you want to engage them in conversation, you almost have to do it on their terms. You’re trying to step into their world, not the other way around.

Find more questions and answers on Autism.

Do Autistic Children Laugh

Yes, of course they do. What they laugh at or what they think is funny may surprise you because it’s never the same as what the average child may laugh at or think is funny. A high functioning child with autism can laugh at simple jokes but won’t understand jokes that are a play on words or require a point of reference in order for the joke to be funny. The problems they have understanding certain aspects of descriptive language and its lack of being more concrete means that a lot of jokes just won’t make sense to them.

Lower functioning children with autism have an inner dialogue about things that parents and the other people in their lives aren’t privy to. These inner dialogues of theirs cause them to laugh about a toy, and event where laughter is inappropriate, or laugh at the antics of the family dog who’s just rolling around on the floor. There’s not much rhyme or reason to what this group laughs about, but there’s also no harm in laughing with them because you can only imagine what it is they think is so funny.

Children formerly diagnosed with Asperger’s who will be recategorized as high functioning autistics in 2013, rarely laugh or laugh at things that are completely inappropriate to laugh at. In this subset of autism, children can be a little frightening to parent s and peers because they laugh at really cruel and unpleasant things. Behavioral therapy sessions can correct this type of inappropriate sense of humor.

Good or bad, all children with autism laugh unless they are so low functioning they are catatonic, in which case it would be really difficult to tell if they are autistic or not. No matter where your child is at on the spectrum, as long as they aren’t laughing about carnage, feel free to laugh with them. It’s one of the most pleasant and surprising moments when the children pause in their laughter to notice you are laughing too.

Do Autistic Children Get Better?“, ask mothers with autistic children

Early Signs of Autism in Babies

Babies don’t really exhibit early signs of autism. Autism predominantly is diagnosed in children between the ages of two and three and a half. Regular well baby check ups will spot any developmental delays and address them as though they are the only present concern. Babies develop at their own rates, so even if a baby is two months behind the projected schedule for a particular milestone, it’s documented but there is rarely concern unless the issue is still present at the next well-baby check up. Remember, autism is a dramatic change in how the child behaves and what they are able to do/ what they are like starting at age two.

Do Autistic Babies Smile