Many children who have autism at the Asperger’s end of the spectrum and children who have Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) share the same symptoms, especially in the areas of communication, functioning in a social setting, and behavior. Common symptoms include issues with organization, sensory and attention problems. A doctor may diagnose a child with ADHD and later change the diagnosis to high-functioning autism/Asperger Syndrome or vice versa.
The difference between the conditions is that the delay in developing language that happens with autism does not happen with ADHD.
There are several lessons here. The first one is that the doctors may confuse the disorders because of their overlapping symptoms. The seconds one is that if you are a parent suspecting that your child has a disorder, you should know your child well and always get a second opinion. Schools usually treat kids with ADHD differently than children with autism, which is why it is so important to get the correct diagnosis even if it doesn’t have any other practical implications in your everyday life.
A condition that doctors don’t know much about is Childhood Disintegrative Disorder.
Children with this condition develop in a regular way until they are 3 or 4. While some children may show the symptoms of this disorder when they are older, up to 10 years old, this happens extremely rarely.
What happens next is a quick regression. Typically, the child will lose all language ability, sometimes coupled with the loss of bladder control.
Other symptoms may include epileptic seizures and motor disorders, most likely caused by problems with sensory processing. Anticonvulsive drugs are often helpful for dealing with the seizures.
Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is very rare and because the symptoms occur so late, it is possible to notice them immediately and get the necessary medical care quickly. Individual treatments for the condition are almost identical to treatments used for autism.