Autism Spectrum Timeline & Diagnosis

After my recent blog post in search of mothers that can relate. I’ve made some amazing connections with mums that have children who are also on the spectrum. Today I will be sharing our autism timeline , it’s a question I’ve been asked a lot lately by health professionals and friends.

Please note this is my sons timeline only , upon speaking to other parents the waiting times and assessment types will differ. I have uploaded this post hoping that someone , somewhere will find it helpful.

Signs – Age: 18- 24 months 

At around 18 months we watched our son slowly disappear. It’s called regression . He use to smile and look back at me every time I called out to him. But at 18 months something changed , there was little to no eye contact and he stopped answering to his name all together . I would cook and he would play under my feet with his toys. But now he had no interest in his toys , instead he liked to look out the window and watch the trees blowing in the wind. Babbling and baby noise of any sort just stopped , he doesn’t wave or point . At the time I never added all of these red flags together.

I was more concerned that he hadn’t started to talk yet. I even called the health visitor. They said every child learns at their own pace , I really wanted to believe her . At this point I already googled the red flags and AUTISM was the result. I spent a lot of nights watching YouTube videos and articles about early signs of autism.

Health visitor – Age: 28 month  

I eagerly awaited his routine check up. At the 2 year review they gave us a questionnaire, I answered ‘no ‘ to most it. I knew something was up. She noticed that he avoided eye contact and I mentioned the speech delay again. She said she would refer us to the paediatrician and a drop in speech therapy clinic. I went home and for the first time I told my husband what I thought was happening. I sent him a link about autism my husband agreed he thought the same.

Gp – Age:30 month

I began to get really anxious so I visited the GP and we told them about our concerns. There was no improvement . The doctor wrote a letter to the paediatrician to push for a referral. But can you believe as we got out the car my little boy said ba ba (bye bye) .

Hearing Test- Age: 31 month

The result of the hearing test was positive, his hearing is fine Alhamdulilah (Praise God).

First Paediatrician Appointment  Age: 32 month 

I completed a really detailed questionnaire prior and the first thing she asked was ‘why are you here today and what are your concerns?’. It was the first time I said it out aloud ‘I think my son has autism’ . She played with him for 40 mins , he made zero eye contact , prized toys out of her hands , he did his own thing.

At the end she said yes his displaying clear signs of autism, she wanted to await his speech therapy result before making a final decision. She asked how I felt about it I said ‘I’m not surprised’. I already knew I just wanted to know how I could help him and what I needed to do next.

Speech Therapy Age: 33 month

Little Nut completed a block therapy session that lasted around 4 weeks. Basically it was play therapy and the idea was to encourage communication via play. It made me more mindful about the types of toys and ways we play with little Nut. I picked up things like using ‘Now and Next / First and Then ‘ and using a ‘Finish box’.

Second Paediatrician Appointment Age: 34 month

We received his official diagnosis of ASD and speech delay. We were given a pack full of information and a long list of people to get in touch with and things to do. I will update you guys on this soon.

The diagnosis hasn’t changed the  way I feel about my son but it has changed the way I see the world.

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