Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside

Autism – Visual Agnosias, Hemianopsia, Myopia, “Mapping” A Room & The Phantom Tea Cup

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SAM_0520OVERVIEW

This is a personal perspective of Autism &  Visual Agnosias 

When people where to look at room, them may think what is going on it, things seem jumbled, cluttered untidy even! This maybe true but there are reasons for this – as a child my Mum thought I was deaf and blind as I say she was half right the “blindness” and “deafness” where to do with sensory perceptual disorders in my case visual and auditory agnosias.

Even now the way in which I map space and objects is very much on a tactile sensory based level (touching to perceive not processing meaning than touching) this means I do certain things to understand my surroundings

AGNOSIAS THAT PLAY APART IN THIS –

  1. Simultagnosia 
  2. Semantic Agnosia
  3. Visuospatial Dysgnosia
  4. Hemianopsia 

 

PHYSICAL ISSUES & NEUROLOGICAL ISSUES  – GLASSES VS TINTED LENSES

Myopia (short sightedness)  in right eye – I had glasses (for short-sightedness) when I was around 5 years old guess what it made my visual agnosias and visual perceptual disorders more acute by magnifying the neurological perceptual distortions – something that James Billett pointed out who gave me tinted lenses in 2012 with glasses I got headaches, felt ill, heightened fragmentation with my tinted lenses all gone that is really saying something to me that we need to test for not only visual eye problems but neurological visual perceptual problems too.

 

  • Things of importance are always on display on a table top so I can “touch” perceive and use accordingly (simult and semantic agnosia)
  • I have a preference for things being on the left side of my body (hemispatial neglect to the right side of my body)
  • If I put things away out of touch for example in a drawer – I will “lose” them in both my mind and body and not know where to “perceive” them (semantic agnosia)
  • Moving around the room means I’m “mapping” the room with my own movements each touch is meaningful in term of getting a sense of myself and the room (visuospatial dysgnosia)

 

THE PHANTOM TEA CUP

Not that long ago I would was in my sitting room and made a cup of tea I put the cup on my “right side/blind side” this meant that I “lost” the context and concept of what and were the tea cup was so I got another tea cup repeated the process and again and again in total I racked up about four tea cup once I investigated and perceived the right side I realised I had used four separate tea cups. 🙂

Paul Isaacs Adult with Autism 2014

 

 

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Author: Paul Isaacs

Paul was branded as a “naughty & difficult child” at school. He was classically autistic and non-verbal due to speech articulation difficulties. He had complex sensory issues and appeared both deaf and blind. He gained functional speech around the age of 7 or 8 years old. He went through the mainstream school system with no additional help or recognition of his autism. Consequently, he did not achieve his academic or his social potential and had very low self-esteem. At age 11, Paul was referred to the children’s mental health service with childhood depression where he was regarded as “developmentally underage” and having speech problems. As an adult, Paul had a string of unsuccessful jobs, and his mental health suffered. He developed both Borderline and Schizotypal Personality Disorders in early 2007. He was referred to mental health services and misdiagnosed with “Asperger traits with a complex personality”, which did not satisfy Paul or his family. A local autism organisation put Paul in touch with an experienced psychiatrist, who diagnosed him with Autism at 24 years old. In 2012 Paul was also diagnosed with Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome by an Irlen Consultant who confirmed that he also had face, object and meaning blindness – conditions which Paul describes eloquently in his speeches and training sessions. He also has dyslexia, dyscalculia and also a dissociative disorder. Having started working as an local autism organisation as a public speaker in 2010, Paul joined their mission to promote autism awareness. His hope is that others will not have to suffer as he did. Now also a core member of our Training Team, Paul continues to enhance true understanding of autism at every opportunity. Paul has released and published 5 books on the subject of autism published by Chipmunka publishing and has contributed to other books too. Having overcome many challenges to achieve the success that he now enjoys, Paul’s message is that Autism is a complex mix of ability and disability. He firmly believes that every Autistic person should have the opportunity to reach their potential and be regarded as a valued member of society. Apart from autism related blogs Paul also write about movies, fashion, art and anything that is of interest. As of August 2015 Paul now works as a freelance speaker, training and consultant in and around the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire area. If you are interested please contact him via email at staypuft12@yahoo.co.uk

5 thoughts on “Autism – Visual Agnosias, Hemianopsia, Myopia, “Mapping” A Room & The Phantom Tea Cup

  1. That is very interesting Paul. My little boy is autistic & has a cortical vision impairment. When he was a baby/toddler he had simultanagnosia. He always had poor peripheral vision & depth of field but I’m wondering if he may also have some agnosia variations. It’s still hard for him to deal with two senses at the same time.
    Your post has really made me think! Thank you!

    • Dear Love Many Trust Few

      Thank you – All Autism profiles are diverse and different, so many different and specific requirements would be made – for example (in my profile) PECS wouldn’t have worked because I would get no visual meaning from the card (for others this would work) – Its person/profile centred. Kindest regards Paul

  2. Thanks Paul. PECS has been meaningless for my boy also. He hasn’t been able to gain any meaning and/or interpret a drawn image. He loves photos though, especially if he is in them.
    I had never really found any good information about visual agnosia – so your post was really informative. Thanks so much, rose

  3. Looks like you may also have an issue with object permanence.
    Im also autistic but if it were me in the phantom tea cup scenario I would assume I merely misplaced the mug of tea before making myself progressively new mugs of tea.

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