What is Asperger’s Syndrome?
Asperger’s Syndrome is a pervasive developmental condition that falls within the autistic spectrum. Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how a person communicates with and relates to other people as well as how they experience the world around them. Asperger’s Syndrome is sometimes referred to as High Functioning Autism (HFA) or Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC). It can affect people of all genders and ages within all cultural and social environments.
The condition is characterised by difficulties with social interaction, social communication and flexibility of thinking or imagination. In addition, there may be sensory, motor and organisational difficulties.
The condition was first identified over 50 years ago by Hans Asperger, a Viennese paediatrician.
A pattern of behaviours and abilities was identified, predominantly amongst boys, including a lack of empathy, impaired imagination, difficulty in making friends, intense absorption in special interests and often problems with motor co-ordination.
Whilst people with Asperger’s Syndrome could exhibit one or all of these characteristics to a greater or lesser degree, many tend to experience isolation and a lack of understanding in their everyday lives, which often results in frustration, anger, depression and a lack of self-esteem. It is possible that a person with Asperger’s Syndrome or an Autistic Spectrum Condition can also have one or other comorbid conditions such as dyslexia or dyspraxia.
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