Today, awareness of autism is at an all-time high. As an adult, you may look back on your childhood and realise that you have possibly had an autism diagnosis overlooked. If you are a parent, you may have come to realisations about yourself observing behaviours in your child. However, you have come to notice the signs. You may suspect that you have autism. You may be wondering; can I, or should I, be tested for autism?
Adult Autism Diagnosis
It can be challenging for an undiagnosed adult to be evaluated for autism. The standardised diagnostic checklists commonly used for diagnosis were designed to assess children. While there are no diagnostic criteria available for adults, it is currently being developed.
However, it is still possible to be evaluated as an adult. First, consult with your GP, share your concerns and have her rule out any underlying physical or medical conditions for your symptoms. Your physician can then refer you to a psychologist for an evaluation.
Why Get Tested?
While you have been successful thus far in moderating your possible symptoms of autism throughout your life, you may have run into some challenges along the way. A formal evaluation and diagnosis can help you in several ways.
- Work-Life – An adult with autism may have difficulties with social interactions, verbal and non-verbal communication. You may have trouble making eye contact with your boss or work colleagues, make involuntary noises during meetings or have difficulty communicating with your co-workers. These symptoms can interfere with your ability to advance your career and reach your desired goals.
- Relationships – Adults with autism can sometimes have trouble making or maintaining friendships or intimate relationships. If you are in a quiet place, such as a movie theatre or library, you may find yourself feeling nervous and start to use repetitive, obsessive or ritualistic behaviours that may interfere with your daily life and social interactions.
Therapy and come medications are available to help you manage and control these behaviours. Getting a diagnosis of autism as an adult can help you find solutions to symptoms that are interfering with your daily life.
Are you or a loved one living with autism? A psychotherapist can help you navigate any difficulties in our relationship together. Give my office a call today, and let’s find a time to talk.