Asperger’s Syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder, but unlike “classic” autism, it is possible for an individual to go through part of life without realizing they are on the spectrum. As such, many adults, who may have never received any type of diagnosis or services as a child, are being diagnosed as adults.
What is Asperger’s Syndrome Anyway?
Asperger’s Syndrome is a type of autism spectrum disorder that is sometimes referred to as a type of high-functioning autism. Two core features are social and communication issues and fixated interests. As with all autism spectrum disorders, the issues will present themselves differently in one person to the other, particularly in adults who may have learned how to better hide the symptoms. Some certain characteristics include: lack of normal eye contact, odd body language, facial tics, difficulty with relationships, fixed interests, repetitive behaviors, attachment to routines. People with Asperger’s Syndrome may have certain sensory issues too, needing an environment that is suited to his or her particular requests.
With thousands of adults receiving this type of diagnosis, what should they expect in regards to treatment options?
Therapy – Both group therapy and one on one counseling are important ways to help an individual with Asperger’s Syndrome feel confident and succeed in work and in social environments. Therapy options can be arranged to help a patient feel confident about his or her current level of social interaction.
Social Skills Treatment – Developing social skills is one of the most important tasks for someone on the autism spectrum. Social skills classes can be very beneficial for someone with Asperger’s Syndrome. These classes include both classwork and real world experiences that help an individual learn how to cope with daily encounters.
Mental Healthcare – Those with Asperger’s Syndrome are more likely to face certain types of mental health disorders than the average population. Having access to good quality mental healthcare is vital. A mental health plan can determine when these issues are likely to occur and help the patient seek care be it with therapy or through medicine or other treatment programs.
Career Counseling – Finding employment that fits the need of a person with Asperger’s Syndrome is sometimes difficult. Good career counseling is key.
In general, those with Asperger’s Syndrome tend to have average to high IQ and can normally function in certain workplace settings, if they have the care they need and a supportive work environment. Getting treatment and support is key to success.
Pasadena Villa programs set out to create a comforting and therapeutic environment. We do things a normal family would do. Our staff and residents learn and model appropriate social and communication skills, from daily mealtimes, to many fun and relaxing arts and crafting activities.
Our mental health professionals work directly with residents. They observe them in actual social situations and incorporate these observations directly into the resident’s ongoing treatment plan. This individual real life personalized attention makes the Pasadena Villa treatment experience more relevant and beneficial for each of our residents, especially when compared to other adult residential treatment services for those diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.
As one of the very first programs in the country to base its treatment upon Social Integration, our mental health facilities offer help through a unique mix of individualized therapy and group residential programs with a clear focus towards achieving more independent living.
The Villa Orlando and Pasadena Villa’s Smoky Mountain Lodge are adult intensive psychiatric residential treatment centers for clients with serious mental illnesses. We also provide other individualized therapy programs, step-down residential programs, and less intensive mental health services, such as Community Residential Homes, Supportive Housing, Day Treatment Programs and Life Skills training. Pasadena Villa’s Outpatient Center in Raleigh, North Carolina offers partial hospitalization (PHP) and an intensive outpatient program (PHP). If you or someone you know may need mental health services, please complete our contact form or call us at 407-574-5190 for more information.