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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Autistic child, behaving abnormally now a days. What should be done?

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Dr. Samik Basu

Pediatrician

Practicing since :1999

Answered : 711 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 5 Feb 2013 in ADHD
Question: My 11year old son has autism and is nonverbal. Of recent, He's been bursting into tears uncontrollably as if somethng's hurting and using his hands to bang his forehead, and seeking proprioception/ XXXXXXX pressure in his chin. He never used to do this before, but started about a year nd a half ago, but it's gotten worse. Because he can't tell me what is wrong, I'm constantly worried, especially when he bursts into tears, i don't know if it's something sensory, or could he need a brain scan? ....he's so detiorated in the last few days, that when he starts, he scratches and hits me or anyone around him. But it's obvious there is something causing him distress. Earlier inthe year around April, he was exhibiting these behaviour, and then we travelled for Easter for two weeks, and as soon as we came back, all the traits just disappeared . He became so calm even his school teacher was amazed. He'd been calm for months since April till October, when he started becoming unsettled again. I know he's also going through changes, e.g puberty, he's started having pubic hair and pimples which I noticed around October.. There are just so many factors to consider.

Also of recent he's started rubbing his tongue with his shirt till his whole shirt is soaked wet with saliva. I took him to a GP, who checked his mouth and said it looks alright in his mouth, but there is definitely something giving him discomfort. Again I don't know if it's sensory or he is having problems with his tonsils.... It's so hard because he cant tell me what is wrong...and I just almost go crazy trying to figure out in my head ,what it could be.
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Answered by Dr. Samik Basu 36 minutes later
Hi,

Thank you for your query.

I am so sorry to hear about your child. I can understand the pain and difficulty you are going through.

These are typical problems in an autistic child where the child cannot express his discomfort or pain to anyone. There maybe manifestations of behavioral problems in these kind of children.
There maybe attention seeking. Sometimes food allergies, headache and tummy aches cause these problems.

Try to calm your child and comfort him. Give him some paracetamol and antispasmosic syrups and see whether there is any change or not. Simple distractive maneuvers should help too.
Puberty does change the mood of the child and may lead to more aggressive attitude. There is no role of a scan right now. These are behavioral problems.

Do not panic. Kindly get into touch with a child psychiatrist who deals with autistic children. You can also join autistic groups in your country and discuss these symptoms which parents having similar problems in their children. Behavioral therapy is the only treatment right now. Don't lose hope.

If you have any further queries you are free to consult me.

Hope this answers your query.

Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Mohammed Kappan
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