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Infant Care (up to 18 months old) Message Board

Infant Care (up to 18 months old) Board Index

Re: Autism
Aug 9, 2006
Here are things that a child [B]should[/B] be doing and shows typical development:

At 4 Months babies should:
Follow and react to bright colors, movement, and objects
Turn toward sounds
Show interest in watching people's faces
Smile back when you smile
At 6 Months:
Relate to you with real joy
Smile often while playing with you
Coo or babble when happy
Cry when unhappy
At 9 Months:
Smile and laugh while looking at you
Exchange back-and-forth smiles, loving faces, and other expressions with you
Exchange back-and-forth sounds with you
Exchange back-and-forth gestures with you, such as giving, taking, and reaching
At 12 Months:
Use a few gestures, one after another, to get needs met, like giving, showing, reaching, waving, and pointing
Play peek-a-boo, patty cake, or other social games
Make sounds, like “ma,” “ba,” “na,” “da,” and “ga”
Turn to the person speaking when his/her name is called
At 15 Months:
Exchange with you many back-and-forth smiles, sounds, and gestures in a row
Use pointing or other “showing” gestures to draw attention to something of interest
Use different sounds to get needs met and draw attention to something of interest
Use and understand at least three words, such as “mama,” “dada,” “bottle,” or “bye-bye”
At 18 Months:
Use lots of gestures with words to get needs met, like pointing or taking you by the hand and saying, “want juice”
Use at least four different consonants in babbling or words, such as m, n, p, b, t, and d
Use and understand at least 10 words
Show that he or she knows the names of familiar people or body parts by pointing to or looking at them when they are named
Do simple pretend play, like feeding a doll or stuffed animal, and attracting your attention by looking up at you
At 24 Months:
Do pretend play with you with more than one action, like feeding the doll and then putting the doll to sleep
Use and understand at least 50 words
Use at least two words together (without imitating or repeating) and in a way that makes sense, like “want juice”
Enjoy being next to children of the same age and show interest in playing with them, perhaps giving a toy to another child
Look for familiar objects out of sight when asked
At 36 Months:
Enjoy pretending to play different characters with you or talking "for" dolls or action figures
Enjoy playing with children of the same age, perhaps showing and telling another child about a favorite toy
Use thoughts and actions together in speech and in play in a way that makes sense, like “sleepy, go take nap” and “baby hungry, feed bottle”
Answer “what,” “where,” and “who” questions easily
Talk about interests and feelings about the past and the future

Here are some of the red flags to watch for:
No big smiles or other warm, joyful expressions by six months or thereafter
No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles, or other facial expressions by nine months or thereafter
No babbling by 12 months
No back-and-forth gestures, such as pointing, showing, reaching, or waving by 12 months
No words by 16 months
No two-word meaningful phrases (without imitating or repeating) by 24 months
Any loss of speech or babbling or social skills AT ANY AGE

There are many many more signs, but go with your gut. If you feel deep down inside that something just ins't right, then it probably isn't. Keep in mind though that your "gut feelings" aren't the same things as "paranoid mom syndrome", which we ALL suffer from. LOL Never let a pediatrician brush off your concerns. Mine kept reassuring me that Blake was just fine, he'll talk in his own time, blah blah blah. I finally had to bow up at the pediatrician and demand to be sent to a Developmental Pediatrician for an evaluation. He was diagnosed with autism the very same day of the appointment with the DP. My gut was right. Early intervention is the key, so if ANYONE ever suspects autism in their child, seek help immediately. In the U.S. alone a child is diagnosed with autism every 20 minutes. :eek: 1 out of every 166 children born are autistic. I read something once that said, "If you don't yet know someone with autism, you soon will." That is a very chilling, but true statement.
Some things about Blake specifically:
He was very independant, wanted to do his own thing. Started walking at 8 months and would run off to play alone. He would run to the tv when certain theme songs or commercials came on, like Dell, Star Trek, Spongebob, Dulcolax. ONLY the themesongs or commercials though, he never sat still long enough to watch a show. He HATED it when I sang and would attack me if I did. No, I don't sound that bad, I actually sing at weddings and in my church, it was just that he couldn't deal with it. He hated loud noises, hated to eat food. Only had liquids for his first year or so, breastmilk, formula, then wholemilk. He hated any and all foods. It was the texture. He is still a very picky eater. He would throw insane tantrums and scream ALL of the time. From about age 9 months. I mean throwing himself down, banging his head onto the floor so hard he would have carpet or tile imprints on his forehead, and screaming so hard his body was completely stiff, his face was purple, his veins were popping out in his neck and his eye was twitching. I can't even explain how scary that is. He wasn't talking, but he spoke this very strange gibberish all of the time. It sounded like chinese or something else oriental. But he could count to 10 at 11 months old. Looking back it is sooo obvious, but he was my first and I was in denial for a bit. He was diagnosed (officially) at 33 months old, but we knew something was wrong way before then. Just trust your instincts and discuss any and all concerns with your child's dr, that's what they're there for. No question is stupid when it comes to your child's well being and if you don't feel comfortable after that, get a second opinion. I really hope this helps all of you. If I had known what to look for perhaps I would've known to get Blake help sooner, but I didn't even know what autism was. I remember sitting at my computer and going to Ask Jeeves and typing "what is autism?" When I read about it my heart sank and I knew it was Blake. I called my mom hysterical and told her Blake was autistic and she said "No he isn't!" My DH layed me out for even suggesting it, but he was diagnosed 2 months later. Mama's know. Take care ladies, feel free to ask more questions Weepyone. :wave:


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