03 Nov RAD and Autism in children: Similarities and Differences
RAD and autism are related neurological disorders that cause a person to have an unusual or extreme reaction to a loud sound, touch, taste, or smell. This article will explain RAD and Autism in children: Similarities and Differences.
Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), is often missed by family doctors, as it is a diagnosis that requires a child to have difficulties in both the social and emotional domains.
Autistic Spectrum Disorder does not require such a lengthy history of normal development, making it easy for doctors to miss the diagnosis.
RAD and Autism: Understanding the Similarities and Differences
The difference between RAD and autism is that RAD is a disorder of attachment and development, while autism is a disorder of communication and social interaction.
RAD children experience intense fear and anxiety in the presence of a person they cannot trust or understand. Many RAD children will only interact with a parent or other caregiver when they feel the need to do so.
They may also experience panic attacks or meltdowns when left alone for extended periods of time.
In some cases, RAD children are unable to form attachments to others because they have not developed the ability to trust them.
This can cause them to have poor communication skills, difficulty regulating their emotions, and problems with self-care.
Autism is characterized by difficulties with social communication, such as verbal and nonverbal communication skills.
It can also include repetitive behaviours such as hand flapping or rocking back and forth, despite having enough sensory stimulation from the environment.
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Causes of Autism and RAD
Though some people may have both traits in their family tree (for example, someone who has an older sibling with autism), one does not necessarily cause the other; many people have both traits to different degrees at different times throughout their lives.
The causes of autism and RAD in children are complex. The most common cause is genetic, so it’s important to get your child tested for inherited conditions like Fragile X syndrome and tuberous sclerosis.
But other factors can also contribute to autism and RAD.
For example, there’s evidence that exposure to pesticide chemicals during pregnancy may be associated with an increased risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental delays.
Children who have an underlying medical condition are also at greater risk for ASD and RAD because these conditions can make symptoms harder to manage or mask due to their effects on brain development.
Children with either diagnosis may experience:
- Difficulty with social skills (including use of language)
- Struggles with emotional regulation
- Need for routine
- Unusual eye contact
- May seem calmer when alone
- Avoiding affection
- Listless or sad appearance
Relationship With Other Children
When autistic and RAD children play with their peers, they often find themselves caught in a world of misunderstanding.
Peers can be very confusing to children with autism and/or RAD because they are not used to the way people interact with one another.
For example, when they try to play with other kids, they may get confused if their peers ask them questions or give them instructions that make no sense to them.
They may also be confused by the presence of other people—they may not understand why there are so many people around them or why some people seem to care about them while others do not.
These behaviours can cause problems for autistic and RAD children during playtime with peers because it makes it difficult for them to understand what is going on around them.
It can also cause problems for their peers if they do not understand how a child with autism or RAD behaves in different circumstances.
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How to Deal with RAD and Autism
If you are a parent of a child with RAD (reactive attachment disorder) and/or autism, you may be wondering how to best help your child. Here are some tips:
-Have regular conversations with your child. Make them as routine as brushing your teeth or getting dressed in the morning.
This will help your child feel more secure in their relationship with you and will help them develop better social skills.
-Be patient with your child’s behaviour. Your child is probably upset about things that are happening around them, and it can be hard for them to express these feelings without coming across as aggressive or rude.
Try not to take this personally—it is just how they communicate!
-If you need to discipline your child for any reason, try to do so in a calm manner without yelling or being angry. This can make the situation worse for both of you if handled poorly or emotionally.