Autism is a very complex disorder characterized by poor or no social interaction and communication, and limited and repetitive patterns of behavior. According to the ICD-10 classification, Classic Children’s Autism is labeled F84.0.
There are three groups of psycho-pathological manifestations that are important when setting the diagnosis of autism. Those are:
I Qualitative Impairment of Social Interactions:
- Damage to non-verbal behaviors such as eye-to-eye, facial expression, body-holding and gestures to establish social interactions.
- Failure to develop a relationship with peers appropriate to age.
- Extremely reduced ability to express pleasantness for the joy of others. There is no spontaneous division of enjoyment, interest and achievement with others. Empathy is not developed.
- There is no social and emotional reciprocity.
A low level of social interaction can be a consequence of low intellectual and adaptive functioning, and not just a sign of autism.
II Qualitative impairments of communication relate to difficulties in both verbal and non-verbal communication components:
- Development of the spoken language is late or completely absent.
- There is damage to the ability to start and maintain a conversation.
- Stereotypical and repetitive language use or idiosyncratic language.
- There are no spontaneous forms of the game, especially games of converting or imitating a suitable age
Difficulties in communication can occur at the earliest age, the absence of the first smile around the 3rd month. It may have difficulty in acquiring the skill of pointing hands on an object to search for an object or to discuss an object and the like.
Communication skills: lack of spontaneous communication, selective acceptance of communication, ego centrism, communication reduced to basic living needs and concrete situation, stickiness on the topic, dysfunctional communication, lack of social imitation, lack of emotions in speech, no eye contact, etc.
III Restricted, repetitive and stereotypical patterns of behavior, interest and activity
- The preoccupation of one or more stereotypical models of an abnormal interest in terms of intensity or orientation. Collecting or cutting special items such as plugs, keys, papers, ends, and so on.
- Inflexible adherence to specific and non-functional routines or rituals can be noticed.
- Stereotypical and repetitive motor behavior such as fingers in front of the eyes, bending fingers, swinging, “fluttering” with hands or turning a hand are present. They may also be complex movements of the entire body, such as jumping, swinging in the hull, turning objects on the surface, creating sound sensations, and the like.
- It can be fascination with some objects like with fans and their vanes, numbers, sockets and switches may be preoccupied, insisting on the same color of food or drawing the same objects.
These features are reduced to insisting on uniformity and rigidly following daily routines. During the day, they have the exact order of actions, certain rituals in everyday activities, the exact arrangement in space and the like. Every deviation is very frustrating and can react violently.