American Asperger's Association Support Group

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Hyperlexia syndrome

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1 Hyperlexia syndrome on Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:18 am

csweepigirl

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Hyperlexia is a syndrome observed in children who have the following characteristics:
A precocious ability to read words, far above what would be expected at their chronological age or an intense fascination with letters or numbers.
Significant difficulty in understanding verbal language
Abnormal social skills, difficulty in socializing and interacting appropriately with people

In addition, some children who are hyperlexic may exhibit the following characteristics:
Learn expressive language in a peculiar way, echo ro memorize the sentence structure without understanding the meaning (echolalia), reverse pronouns
Rarely initiates conversations
An intense need to keep routines, difficulty with transitions, ritualistic behavior
Auditory, olfactory and / or tactile sensitivity
Self-stimulatory behavior
specific, unusual fears
Normal development until 18-24 months, then regression
strong auditory and visual memory
Difficulty answering "Wh--" questions, such as "what," "where," "who," and "why"
Think in concrete and literal terms, difficulty with abstract concepts
Listen selectively, appear to be deaf




Why identify children with hyperlexia across diagnostic categories?
to understand the common way in which they process language
to understand the common way in which they learn
to assess strengths in visual processing and reading
to devise effective therapeutic and educational programs



Last edited by csweepigirl on Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:27 pm; edited 1 time in total

2 Re: Hyperlexia syndrome on Fri May 08, 2009 7:27 pm

KelleyNNelson

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This is something I always thought Richard had... He's always had all of the symptoms, but no one seems to believe me on it. He's known his alphabet forward and backward since age 2 1/2, both upper and lower case and in and out of order... He knew his numbers to 50 by age 3 (maybe even higher), again both in order and out of order. He was typing out dozens of words on the computer at age 3, something he stopped doing for a while simply out of boredom, but he still knew how to read a lot of words by sight. Now, for the last 6 months he's been picking up reading like no one's business. He's reading things that I didn't know he could read.... He's reading things phonetically, not just remembering words. And they can be big words too! For instance, he can read all of the state's names on license plates (one of his current obsessions). Plus, of course he has all of the other symptoms, which are basically the autistic symptoms. But I've always felt this was the proper diagnosis for him. Like you say at the bottom, I wish he had this diagnosis instead of mild autism because it might help him get the proper treatment he deserves.

3 Re: Hyperlexia syndrome on Sun May 17, 2009 11:29 am

csweepigirl

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I was just thinking about this, because when I saw him last night, he was going over the license plates and states. He is GOOD at that. You are problably right.

4 Re: Hyperlexia syndrome on Mon May 18, 2009 1:41 pm

KelleyNNelson

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Heh... he just likes to show off. You ought to see him just looking at various things and being able to read them without help. It's almost creepy. The states he kinda had memorized because he was obsessed with that puzzle thing he had gotten for Christmas... So now at 5 he's got all of his states and capitols memorized, (kind of like how he's got all of the makes and models of cars memorized... lol) but imagine our surprise when he was able to read them on license plates. Yeah, it's pretty cool. Like I said, he just amazes us every day with the stuff he learns and does. Very Happy

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