Pervasive development disorders, also called PDDs, are a group of conditions that are marked by delays in the development of several basic skills. The most notable of these skills are the ability:
· to socialize with others
· to communicate
· to use imagination.
These disorders are called development disorders because they are diagnosed in children around the age of 3 years, which is a critical phase in the development of a child. These disorders usually start far earlier than the age of 3, but most parents do not notice any problem until the child is really a toddler who still hasn’t started talking, walking or developing the way that other children of the same age are.
There are 5 types of pervasive development disorders and these are:
Autism: children who are suffering from autism tend to have problems with social interaction and communication. They also tend to have limited interests and activities.
Asperger’s syndrome: just like those children with autism, children with Asperger’s syndrome have difficulty in communication and social interaction. However, unlike autistic kids, children with Asperger’s syndrome tend to have average or above average intelligence and they develop normally in areas of cognition and language.
Pervasive development disorder: this category includes those children who experience significant problems with communication as well as play and have difficulty in interacting with other people. This is referred to as a milder form of autism because children suffering from it are too social to be diagnosed autistic.
Childhood disintegrative disorder: children suffering from this rare condition experience slow development in all the areas, be it physical or mental. At some point later, mostly between the age of 2 and 10 years, the child will begin to lose a lot of the skills that he/she had acquired through the years and with time, the child will also lose control over other functions such as bowel and bladder control.
Rett’s syndrome: those children who suffer from this disorder tend to show symptoms of PDD. They also suffer from a loss of many motor as well as movement skills such as that of walking, using their hands, etc. They end up developing poor coordination. Because this condition has been linked to a defect on the X chromosome, it very commonly affects girls.
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