How do you believe the traits of autism relate?

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Ganondox
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05 Jul 2012, 1:59 pm

First, I believe that their are traits of autism that are part of the brain, and traits the energy because of these either directly or indirectly. I also believe autism has no one cause; rather autism is a fixed point on an interative process. There are several initial layouts of the brain, and due to neuroplascity the brain changes until it becomes an autistic brain. Also due to the relation between neurological and emergent traits, multplie different final neurologies could be autistic.

Anyway, why do you believe autistic traits are related and found together? For example, maybe more neurocircuts results in deeper sensory experience and a slower processing speed. The low processing speed makes social interaction harder. Difficultly socializing and a more powerful brain from the larger number of neurocircuts encourage introversion and deep thought. ToM becomes more difficult outside of real time simply because there is less practice, and deep thinking may prevent people from jumping to conclusions, further making it more difficult to judge what people are thinking and why.

So what are your thoughts on the interaction of autistic traits?


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Tuttle
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05 Jul 2012, 2:40 pm

For me it feels like a lot of my traits have to do with the inability to filter relevant and irrelevant information. I either get all of it or none of it in each aspect.



Ganondox
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05 Jul 2012, 3:30 pm

Tuttle wrote:
For me it feels like a lot of my traits have to do with the inability to filter relevant and irrelevant information. I either get all of it or none of it in each aspect.


Would you mind going into a little more detail, ex why you think there is no filliter, and an example of how it affects something?


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btbnnyr
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05 Jul 2012, 3:40 pm

My autistic traits are centered around my detailed sensitive sensory perception, my way of thinking about the world developed from how I sense the world, and my lack of NT social instincts to modulate my perception and cognition according to the NT social model that I lack.

e.g. In my mind, the physical features and movements of facial eggspressions are automatically the most relevant stimuli, and the states of mind behind them are largely irrelevant, unless I consciously make them relevant. The farther away from strong basic emotions like joy, anger, and fear, the harder it is to consciously make those states of mind relevant and to know how they operate in others, without eggsperiencing many of them myself.



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05 Jul 2012, 3:53 pm

I can relate to Tuttle's post. It's something with processing the information of the world that goes wrong or is, to say it nicer, different than by NT'ers. Processing the world in fragments/details, hypersensitive, hyposensitive.

It can explain a lot. Like in social situations there are a lot of social cues you've to process and interpret in the right way. I can't listen to what someone says and at the same focus on body language or make properly eye contact (which is too intense anyway: too much information I think). The more people and/or noises there are, the less I can function normally because there is more process correctly. Furthermore I can't distinguish the main sound from the background sound so in many social situations I can't even hear what is being said (which will not improve your social life).
As for the stimming and obsessions.. I need them to survive in a world that seems to me a chaos of sounds, lights, movements, colors. Stimming makes me focus on the stim so I can block all out. Others who suffer more from hyposensitivity will need stimming to get more information in their heads I think, to wake up the flood of information.
In everyday life it means I have to do careful planning and make lists of everything to assure everything will not be messed up in my head due to too much information / many details.
When my brain crashes because of a information-overload I get a shutdown. Others can also get a meltdown. Too much sensory information is mixed up in my head and I can't distinguish them anymore or make any sense of it.

Currently I'm reading the book about sensory perceptual issues by Olga Bogdashina which is all about sensory experience and how this causes most, if not all, traits of autism. Well I'm just at the beginning of the book but so far it's really interesting and I recognize a lot in it.


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Tuttle
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05 Jul 2012, 4:26 pm

Ganondox wrote:
Tuttle wrote:
For me it feels like a lot of my traits have to do with the inability to filter relevant and irrelevant information. I either get all of it or none of it in each aspect.


Would you mind going into a little more detail, ex why you think there is no filliter, and an example of how it affects something?


I have no clue why there's no filter. I'm not in neuroscience. What I know is through my experiences that's what seems to be the case.

As for how it affects something. I notice every detail when I look at a room and cannot step back. At a sensory processing level, this means I am sensing more - in my case severe hypersensitivities in the 5 senses people tend to think of as well as abnormal vestibular and propioception. At a cognitive level, this means all those details are there, so I cannot figure out what to do. This is currently being relevant because I'm trying to figure out how to help clean a house. I look at a room, and no matter how many times I try, if I'm looking at it in order to try to clean it I get completely overwhelmed because I cannot sort out any particular things to do because I see absolutely every thing that needs to get done.

A better example than sight for a sensory thing though is sound. Put me in a room with multiple conversations going where there is one conversation they're in. Most people, that one conversation is the one they focus on, and the rest is background noise. The next largest group, which based on what I've read on posts here includes most people here, hear all that noise including the conversation they're in as background noise. What's interesting about me, is that usually I hear all of that noise, the conversation I'm "supposed" to be in, and the rest of the noise around me, as equally important, none of it as background noise, and process it all. I can be in a room and effectively be in 7 conversations at the same time. I cannot shut off listening in on those other conversations ever, unless I uncontrollably shutoff all of them. It's actually quite frustration.

Which gets to the other half of it. When something is too much, then that thing is no longer processed. This is where most people on here fall with any background noise around that conversation they're supposed to be in. My boundary for that is much higher, both fortunately and unfortunately. That's the point where things go fuzzy, nothing sounds right, cannot process anything via that sense.

So, this same thing happens for each of my senses. Each of them has their own cutoff points. Each of them overreacts to just about everything, is it constant overload, constantly is fighting with my body, and sometimes just snaps and can't take anymore (with predictable triggers, too much overall, too much overtime, or other ways).

Yet, that only describes the sensory part, and I don't think this description of being unable to filter and it either being all - that is even more than I'm supposed to be getting - or nothing is limited to the sensory aspects. These same sorts of things seem relevant to other aspects of my autism, such as empathy, emotional regulation within myself, some parts of my executive functioning difficulties (either I know what I'm doing or I shut down and have absolutely no clue where to begin or how to make the relevant decisions), and so on.

Stimming is trying to keep this body together in a world not meant for a body and mind like this. Both my therapist and my OT have actually been commenting on particular physical reasons behind many of my stims.

Rituals tie back in because what's important is keeping sense of the world. At least for me, what matters in things like rituals is the predictability of it, because its safe. Its something I don't need to process as thoroughly, as I notice every one of those tiny differences that others don't. It's safe because its simpler and takes less mental energy so its a way to get a break from the normal life of absolutely everything always mattering, because the old patterns being the same is soothing in the same way that lying down and feeling a dog's breathing pattern is soothing because its like a heartbeat and lung pattern of a mother. Liking patterns isn't unique to autism, its just that they end up mattering more to us because notice absolutely everything. Rituals tie into that natural love for patterns and are that safety net because of the differences in every tiny little thing mattering because we see them all.



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05 Jul 2012, 4:50 pm

I wonder if stimming is related to the neurocircuits or electrical impulses in the brain, because sometimes it just feels like energy.



Last edited by Marybird on 12 Jul 2012, 12:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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05 Jul 2012, 5:53 pm

If I had to guess at my own neurology, I'd say that areas of my brain don't communicate like they're supposed to.

I have electrical "shorts" in my wiring, if that makes sense.


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05 Jul 2012, 6:23 pm

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05 Jul 2012, 7:11 pm

I agree with what tuttle wrote, also in my situation, the lack of filtering impacts communication. I struggle with open questions as my brain gets overloaded with too much possible information, and non-routine questions are also difficult. In conversation with people, I dont tend to filter and take away the underlying message, I am more likely to just remember verbatim what the person said. Broad small talk is much harder than structured/deeper conversation due to my lack of filtering thoughts and possible links. I think my lack of filtering impacts understanding of body language as well, I struggle to diffrentiate between what is relevent and what is not. For me the lack of filtering definately contributes to a lot of sometimes extreme mental exhaustion or sensory overload, which tends to lead to a mental shut down.

There are other things other than lack of filtering too, though I would say that has a big influence in a lot of things. The way the neuropsychologist that I am working with summarised autism is "brain damage", with the severity determined by the amount of damage, how correct or PC that is, I do not know. Things like difficulty recognising faces, that is likely to do with the area of the brain that relates to facial recognition not being developed properly due to lack of eye contact, lack of eye contact due to problems with the amygdala. Things like not filtering, the brain usually has a dominant neural pattern (what is focused on) and suppresses other neural patterns (the irrelevent background information), however the neuropsychologist hypothesises that what is going on in my head is that the neural patterns are not suppressing eachother, hence in my situation, the different sources of information merge (results in some interesting sensory perception experiences). Also I think there is something not quite right with my gestalt perception, though I dont know what the underlying problem is with this or how it links with other things.

I'm not quite sure how to phrase that all ^ to directly answer your initial question, but I think my answer is somewhere in there.


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06 Jul 2012, 11:43 pm

The problem with understanding autism is the fact nobody understands how the mind works.

So we know much about the brain, but the brain is nothing compared to what drives the brain.

There is another side to our being Quantum Physics are just beginning to understand, they call it the observer, religion tries to claim it as their own. I call it the phenomena we have yet work out, our spirit, how does the spirit work inside our body?

I'm not religious, but I do know we have a spirit, and it does affect us wheather we believe it or not...



Ganondox
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07 Jul 2012, 6:56 pm

That's another thing I want to touch on, severity. What causes the difference between more severe and less severe, are they related, how does severity change over time. Also, I don't think much has been touched upon about the relation between Special Interests to everything else.


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07 Jul 2012, 7:51 pm

Ganondox wrote:
That's another thing I want to touch on, severity. What causes the difference between more severe and less severe, are they related, how does severity change over time.


All I could imagine is that if the theory of toxic testosterone would play a part in that is that the severity or the different levels of severity people can have could depend somehow on the concentration of the testosterone at a specific moment in time at a specific moment of the development of the brain of the prenatal baby, and it is proved that the left hemisphere (where eg the speech-center lies) of prenatal boys is growing slower than that from girls, which could be an explanation that if the toxic testosterone-theory would be right that ASD is more often occuring in boys as the left hemisphere can be longer exposed to testosterone.
So severity might depend on the degree of certain parts of the (mostly left hemisphere (?) of the) brain being differently affected and probably it is the same parts but a different degree of "damage" or "exposure".
But I am not into neuroscience and the toxic-testosterone-theory is not fully proven as well.


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Genesis
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07 Jul 2012, 7:54 pm

Even if there is traits layered deep inside the brain.... there is still alot to discover, such as what makes us tick, what makes us think, makes us process/hyper-focus on one thing....