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Asperger's Syndrome:
An Interview with Tony Attwood

Interview By Allison Martin

Book review of "Special Children Challenged Parents"Encouraging and highly informative, Tony Attwood's Asperger's Syndrome is hands down the best single guide to Asperger's Syndrome available. The scope of this remarkable book is very comprehensive - from diagnosis, social behavior, language, interests and routine to cognition, motor skills, and sensory sensitivity - Attwood covers all the areas where children with Asperger's struggle.

What inspired you to write your book, Asperger's Syndrome?

Tony Attwood: The inspiration came from my concern that there was a lack of information available to both parents and professionals throughout the world, and that the knowledge that I had gained from experience as a clinician could not only be presented by workshops but as the basis of a book. It is an extension on my one day workshops on Asperger's Syndrome.

What is the single most important thing that parents of children with Asperger's Syndrome should do to assist their child?

Tony Attwood: The most important thing is to understand them, and to try and see the world from their perspective. Their
job is then to explain the Child's perception of the world and the logic of their response to those who support
them at school and other circumstances.

What are the most significant issues that parents of children with Asperger's Syndrome face?

Tony Attwood: The most significant issue that parents face is a lack of understanding and inappropriate attitudes towards those with Asperger's Syndrome. They also face problems with regard to remedial tuition in the areas of social cognition and empathy in that schools may not have the knowledge and resources to help children in these areas. My clinical experience suggests that success in the social and emotional area is one of the best predictors of successful outcome.

Is there a link between prematurity and Asperger's Syndrome?

Tony Attwood: On the link between prematurity and Asperger's Syndrome, we do know that for some families there is a higher incidence of unfavourable events, and recent studies have suggested a link between prematurity and autistic spectrum disorders including Asperger's Syndrome. At present this is a link, but no causal factors have been identified.

Interview Copyright 2003 Allison Martin


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