Body Language Mastery
Pick up language they have heard from videos and cartoons. Anyone who knows all of my family knows that much of Ben's language is actually Joe's, copied but yet not understood. All autistic people however have some difficulty in the way they use and understand verbal and non verbal forms of communication. Understanding facial expressions, body language and subtle use of spoken language such as idioms and metaphors are all part ofthe language and communication problems experienced by autistic people. All parents, carers and even teachers reading this will be able to think of many examples of the communication difficulties experienced by the children in their care and whilst we can all provide amusing examples of how often language is misunderstood, the reality and severity of these problems cannot be underestimated. Whether a child or person is considered to be 'high functioning' or at the lower end of the spectrum, the communication difficulties pervade every walk of life.
Collection of a family pedigree represents an opportunity to build a relationship with the patient and family and to learn about how the family functions.4 As the genetic counselor or other healthcare provider explains the purpose of the family history, an atmosphere of open communication and respect can be established. This process provides a window to the social relationships and psychosocial and educational needs of patients and families. In the social sciences, genograms are used to graphically depict family dynamics that influence individual behaviors.5 This information is also essential for successful counseling of patients in the clinical genetics setting, and while not always recorded in the same fashion, it is a vital part of the process of pedigree gathering. Observations about coping mechanisms, assumptions about disease causation, family hierarchy, key life experiences, stress levels, body language, and religious and ethnic influences all are integrated into consideration...
The difficulties with literality, being unable to adapt a concept for different situations, the problems with facial expressions and body language all make such safety issues a minefield for a child or indeed an adult with AS. I have tried to explain to all of my boys (apart from Ben who hasn't the understanding yet) the dangers of speaking to strangers .without much success. I have used computer programmes to illustrate the point, drawn pictures and talked at great length. Joe's answer, and Luke's and Matthew's answer when they were younger, was that if you asked someone their name they wouldn't be a stranger any more Whilst all of the boys have the same kind of language difficulties, Luke with a concrete diagnosis of AS takes such messages to the extreme. As the 'Say no to strangers' message was taught to him at school when he was younger, he then refused to speak to anyone he had not met before. If some kindly person got chatting in a shop and asked him his name, or I took him to a...
Given the fact that autism plays a large part in making Joe the delightful little chap he is, one area that creates confusion is the misconception that autistic people are unable to tell lies. I have thought long and hard about why Joe is so literal, has such difficulties understanding facial expressions, body language and receptive language but yet has the imagination worthy of a commendation by Walt Disney Having lived with Joe and his 'lies' for so many years, I have come to the conclusion that this ability to tell the most amazingly far-fetched and believable stories, is yet another one ofthe triad ofimpairments in clever disguise. 'Impaired' is maybe the wrong word for the way Joe can expand on the truth, invent full scenarios from just one word or action and omit aspects of a story in order for it to have a different meaning.
The methods of diagnosis are observing the patient's outward appearance, demeanor, body language, complexion, and tongue the smell of the breath, skin, and secretions and the tone and strength of the voice. Questions are asked regarding symptoms, medical history, diet, and lifestyle. A palpation test, which is the taking of the pulse, is conducted at six different locations at three depths on each wrist, with an analysis involving 28 different qualities. Once a diagnosis is made, the treatments involve one or more of the following acupuncture which reestablishes the flow of energy to affected organs through needle stimulation, herbs and herbal combinations, diet adjustments, massage and manipulation, and therapeutic exercise specifically qigong.
I think Luke sums up succinctly the frustration that most AS people feel when it comes to language and communication. Whilst I see Luke as enchantingly candid, his honesty being a refreshing well of clear water in a world that is too often filled with grimy duplicity, the rest of the family sometimes don't see it in quite the same way. The girls don't take kindly to being told their backsides look big, their make-up stupid or their boyfriends being told that they are the third one that week The difficulties with facial expressions, body language and subtle meanings of language cause problems for those with AS in all walks of life. Whilst trying to provide a safe haven of security and understanding in the home, the practicalities ofexpecting everyone to speak clearly and unambiguously and understand the AS mind are not so easy in practice, and in a large family such as my own, Luke often seems to be the outsider misunderstood and misunderstanding.
From the point of view of source-receiver interaction, stimuli differ in their pur-posiveness. Purposive stimuli1 differ in the specificity of their target. Non-purposive stimuli are released inadvertently by animate or inanimate systems. Consider a rabbit hopping in an open field. The moving object is a stimulus that triggers attack by the fox. This stimulus is not released purposively by the source. When the rabbit discovers the attack, it may freeze ( fear conditioning), which is already a purposive stimulus to abort the attack this purpose was selected by evolution and shaped the innate, a priori behavioural repertoire of the species. As the meaning of purposive stimuli is context and receiver dependent, it is not necessarily what the sender meant to deliver. Nowhere is it better epitomized than in 'pragmatics', the discipline that studies the meaning of sentences in language (i.e. verbal stimuli, definitions 1 and 2) in the particular contexts in which...
With so many shades ofautistic spectrum differences in our household, we spend many a crazy hour playing games whereby the boys learn to read facial expressions and body language - in fact we have devised our own version of charades whereby the girls act out a little play without words and the boys have to guess by their body language and facial expressions exactly what is happening. We get some hilarious answers We also have Simon Baron-Cohen's Mind Reading computer programme which aims to aid people with all shades ofthe autistic spectrum improve their recognition of facial expressions.
Body Language Basics
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