Einstein, a Case Study for Asperger's

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Einstein a Case Study for Asperger's
Christina Parker
PSY 410
February 6, 2012
Dr. Melda Jones

Einstein a Case Study for Asperger's
Mental illness has existed as long as humans have, but only in the last hundred years or so have psychologist started to truly understand mental illness. There is still much, that is unknown about mental illness and human behavior. One mental disorder that was added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) in 1994 is Asperger’s Disorder. This disorder is usually diagnosed in early childhood, but in Albert Einstein’s time Asperger’s Disorder was unknown. Einstein had many of the diagnostic criteria for Asperger’s Disorder but was not diagnosed. Einstein was quiet and withdrawn, but had an amazing mind for mathematics. In comparison, Temple Grandin was diagnosed with Asperger’s Disorder and has many of the same mannerisms as Einstein. Overview of Asperger’s Disorder’s History

Dr. Hans Asperger studied children that acted differently from others in the 1940s. Dr. Asperger called these children “Little Professors” because they were so interesting. In 1980s Dr. Lorna Wing called children with Asperger’s (AS) high-functioning autism individuals. In 1994, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) added AS. Asperger’s Syndrome (ASD) is a distinct group of neurological conditions characterized by greater or lesser degrees of impairment in language and communication skills with repetitive or restrictive patterns of thoughts and behaviors. There is no known cause or treatment for AS.

The parents of children with AS often by or before the child’s third birthday sense that something is amiss in his or her child’s behavior or developmental skills. Two out of 10,000 children statistically diagnosed with AS or ASD. Boys are three to four times more likely than girls to have AS or ASD. The children exhibit delayed psychomotor skills (crawling and walking), and have problems with communicating and socializing with other children.AS children have an obsession with one topic or interests excluding other topics and interests. AS children have a formal speech that lacks rhythm and modulation. AS children appear clumsy when they walk and may have delayed motor skills (catching a ball, pedaling a bike, and other skills). The cause of AS or ASD is unknown but is thought to be genetic because AS tends to run in families. The part of the brain that controls social behavior functions differently or develops differently from other children without AS. The part of the brain that controls body movements and balance are also different in AS children than other children. ASD is a high-functioning autism disorder. Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome Explained

There is no known cause of autism. Research today is using MRI imaging to determine how the Autism brain is structured. Dr. Grandin explains her condition like this: The brain is an office; the frontal lobe is the office manager. The other compartments of the brain are like the many departments in an office. The office departments do not communicate well between the other offices such as sales, product development, management, and so on. The autistic brain has to be understood and trained in a way that works best for the individual. No one treatment works for every autistic individual. Finding what motivates the individual’s fear and helping the individual to overcome or change the environment to a less chaotic one will help the individual to learn and progress.

Autistic individuals do not understand facial expressions or tone changes in voices. Behavioral issues such as defecation and twitching are common with Asperger’s and Autism. Individuals with Asperger’s Syndrome are high-end functioning Autistic individuals. To understand Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome, Dr. Grandin suggests that people move away from language. The nonverbal child does not understand language. The nonverbal child is sensory-based and...
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