Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside


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Being Brain Damaged – Is Apart of my Autism Profile – A Word That Just “is”

Baby Fisted Hands

Baby picture – note fisted/clasped hands and pointed toes signs of brain injury.

Note – This is from a personal perspective of how autism affects me and my profile.

Brain Damage/Injury

Brain Damaged and/or brain injury is apart of the reason why I have autism and certain “pieces” of it would not have been there but this is due to circumstance and environment the difficult birth.

The placental abruption and oxygen deprivation that caused and stroke, left-right disorientation, visual perceptual disorders, language processing disorder (aphasia) and issues with internalising and externalising language and other developmental aspects.

A Human-Being – Everyone is Equal

I have no problem with seeing this a part of the issues I face nor do I have an issue with the terminology being used.

In the this world today words sometimes to have to be used as marker and my case this is maker of a clustering of symptoms that I have as a result of brain injury.

As I have stated in the title it just “is” and I am fine with this it doesn’t make me feel any more nor any less. I am “Paul” first (and to be honest always will be) everything else pales in the background of significance.

I have been dealt a set cards and I am going to use them to the best of my abilities. I am not a super-human, I am not the next generation of humanity, nor a super-being, I am not technical, logical or literal or “intellectual”. I am afraid I am just a person.

Autism is Person Centred – It isn’t the Complete Definition of the the Person

I would however I say that I am creative (like art, poetry, wordplay, soundplay, textures, patterns, colours and fashion) and idiosyncratic (I play to the own beat) , mercurial (I listen to my emotions) and solitary (I like moments of my own company).

All the other things are redundant to me in the bigger picture they apart of me they aren’t me.

I am just a person living life and that is really all. People can play with words all they want but sometimes it is better to get real if not for your sake then for others.

Paul Isaacs 2015


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Emotions, Words and Speech Production In The Context Of Autism

SAM_0428

Note – This is from a personal perspective.

The Landscape of Words

Speaking and going on and on for the one’s sake not knowing the beginning where it started nor where it ended or were it should end the internal cluttering coming from within me like a tidal wave of phonics being spurted out in a “scatter gun” approach the receptive sounds coming into my consciousness.

I had a speech and language delay (I had no coherent words in my head until I was 7/8 years old) and the words are still whirling trying to pin point meaning, context, relevance, need, want, substance, creativity, what the other person wants, what I want it doesn’t always fit it at times is lack of coherence a kaleidoscope of feelings with no visual basis or formation

I will always try and have a go and feel by trying it is giving me more opportunities to integrate and connect.

Logorrhea

In psychology, logorrhea or logorrhoea (from Ancient Greek λόγος logos and ῥέω rheo “to flow”) is a communication disorder, expressed by excessive wordiness with minor or sometimes incoherent talkativeness.

Sometimes I talk and talk but it doesn’t mean I understand or connect with what I am saying (the expressive function) and also the.

I don’t always process what the other person is saying (receptive function) this is in context is to do with with aphasia and the “cluttering” of language based auditory information. This is reflected in the content and the way in which I am expressing the information at the time.

Thought Disorder

In psychiatry, thought disorder (TD) or formal thought disorder (FTD) refers to disorganized thinking as evidenced by disorganized speech. Specific thought disorders include derailment, poverty of speech, tangentiality, illogicality, perseveration, neologism, and thought blocking.

Derailment

In psychiatry, derailment (also loosening of association, asyndesis, asyndetic thinking, knight’s move thinking, or entgleisen) is a thought disorder characterized by discourse consisting of a sequence of unrelated or only remotely related ideas. The frame of reference often changes from one sentence to the next.

In the context of how I process words and my own emotions which is a condition called alexithymia (I connect with gesture, movement, tactile feeling, textures and tastes) my thoughts are buried beneath many hidden levels this can lead to thoughts ebbing and flowing from within me with multiple things being said from different areas.

The irregular retrieval means that I always trying to find words for emotions and the emotions come first so it happens in reverse causing the issues stated above also.

Conclusion

I will continue to try and find the things within me that connect with being human which make me feel inclusive, connected and integrated with the world around me using the tools i have learned to the best of my abilities. 🙂

Poetry from a personal perspective has helped me with these processes of word formation and emotions. 🙂

Paul Isaacs 2014


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Supermarkets – Autism, Sensory Perceptual Disorders & Sensory Issues

Street Scene PixeledOVERVIEW

Note – This is a personal perspective of how I experiences Supermarkets 

There are many ways in and strategies which I have used to navigate a supermarket over the years when I was a child I never knew what this “big colourful space” was that my parents used to take me to, I had no concept or connection with what it was as it was a bunch of fragmented images (that I would like or hate or get sensory “highs” from) noises that I couldn’t decipher and would like or dislike, kinesthetic sensory experiences were a way of connecting with the environment and experiencing the products in this fashion was very useful for me as it was building a bridge of connectivity.

So here is what helps me –

HEADPHONES

This helps reduce noise input not only do I have Verbal Auditory Agnosia/Aphasia (meaning deafness) I also have an Auditory Hypersensitivity which is greatly helped due to headphones – (imagine hearing every single sound all at once at equal volume) it helps me connect better with my surroundings and focus on the tasks of buying the products I can also get stuck on “words” and “sounds” that I hear which is also helped by the headphones.

TINTED LENSES

These help and continue to help with processing visuals in light as I have Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome/Light Sensitivity they help with reducing light “over” visual information, I also have Visual AgnosiasProsopagnosia, Simultagnosia, Semantic Agnosia (seeing things in bits, without “meaning”  with a lack of depth 2D) this can cause problem with navigating surroundings. Although I still have  these agnosias and don not have a “visual memory” it helps me navigate surroundings much better, with reduced light input, less fragmentation and more visual depth and “real time”.

CLOTHING

I wear clothing with “pressure points” I have Visuospatial Dysgnosia (body disconnection) so I have tight bracelets round my wrists, my hair is in a tight bun/ponytail, tight fitted shoes – This gives me “anchor points” for my body to navigate around the “space” around me.

CONCLUSION

I still “see” and “hear” without “meaning” and in the supermarket I still like to touch to perceive and map my surroundings by remembering my patterns of movement around the store, however I believe in positivity and healthy challenges for myself and this is one of them. I hope this helps. 🙂

Paul Isaacs 2014


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Autism & A Difficult Birth – Cerebral Hypoxia, Silent Stroke, Middle & Posterior Arteries, Agnosias & Apraxias

Baby 1987 2

Overview

Note – This is a personal experiences of the trajectory of my Autism

I certainly had Cerebral Hypoxia as apart of a difficult birth I was born a month premature and through Caesarian Section . The Cerebral Arteries also had a part to play in this also.

Middle Cerebral Artery

Middle Cerebral Artery Syndrome

Which resulted in the following –

Posterior Cerebral Artery

Stroke Not not all these symptoms apply to me

Peripheral territory (Cortical branches) Not not all these symptoms apply to me

  • Homonymous hemianopia (often upper quadrantic): Calcarine cortex or optic radiation nearby.
  • Bilateral homonymous hemianopia, cortical blindness, awareness or denial of blindness; tactile naming, achromatopia (color blindness), failure to see to-and-fro movements, inability to perceive objects not centrally located, apraxia of ocular movements, inability to count or enumerate objects, tendency to run into things that the patient sees and tries to avoid: Bilateral occipital lobe with possibly the parietal lobe involved.
  • Verbal dyslexia without agraphia, color anomia: Dominant calcarine lesion and posterior part of corpus callosum.
  • Memory defect: Hippocampal lesion bilaterally or on the dominant side only.
  • Topographic disorientation and prosopagnosia: Usually with lesions of nondominant, calcarine, and lingual gyrus.
  • Simultanagnosia, hemivisual neglect: Dominant visual cortex, contralateral hemisphere.
  • Unformed visual hallucinations, peduncular hallucinosis, metamorphopsia, teleopsia, illusory visual spread, palinopsia, distortion of outlines, central photophobia: Calcarine cortex.
  • Complex hallucinations: Usually nondominant hemisphere.

Overview

Due to a silent stroke within the womb which is to do with

Additional injury to the left hemisphere to the such as

and the rest such as Social Social-Emotional Agnosia, Alexithymia for example where genetics.

Conclusion

It is important to know the trajectory and the why’s and the hows? of how someone has Autism, all this being said I will not let this DEFINE my PERSONHOOD but it does continue to explain why a process and communicate in a particular way. 🙂

Paul Isaacs 2014


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Aphasias – Expressive & Receptive Language in Autism “Fruit Salads” – D.Williams

BrocasAreaSmallOVERVIEW

Note – this is a personal account of Aphasia all people on the spectrum have different profiles. 🙂 

BROCA’S EXPRESSIVE APHASIA

Expressive aphasia (non-fluent aphasia) is characterized by the loss of the ability to produce language (spoken or written). It is one subset of a larger family of disorders known collectively as aphasia. Expressive aphasia differs from dysarthria, which is typified by a patient’s inability to properly move the muscles of the tongue and mouth to produce speech. Expressive aphasia contrasts with receptive aphasia, which is distinguished by a patient’s inability to comprehend language or speak with appropriately meaningful words. Expressive aphasia is also known as Broca’s aphasia in clinical neuropsychology and agrammatic aphasia in cognitive neuropsychology and is caused by developmental issues or damage to the anterior regions of the brain, including (but not limited to) the left posterior inferior frontal gyrus or inferior frontal operculum, also described as Broca’s area 

Personal Overview

Sometimes even now I “lose” words “within myself” this is to do with “internal verbal fragmentation” word would just escape from mind and I would have no interpretive words to express, so I would use movements and sounds to create my own language and that was both functional and meaningful to me.

Paul Isaacs

WERNICKE’S APHASIA/AUDITORY VERBAL AGNOSIA

Auditory verbal agnosia (AVA), also known as pure word deafness, is the inability to recognize speech. Individuals with this disorder lose the ability to understand language, repeat words, and write from dictation. However, spontaneous speaking, reading, and writing are preserved. Individuals who exhibit pure word deafness are also still able to recognize non-verbal sounds.Sometimes, this agnosia is preceded by cortical deafness; however, this is not always the case. Researchers have documented that in most patients exhibiting auditory verbal agnosia, the discrimination of consonants is more difficult than that of vowels, but as with most neurological disorders, there is variation among patients.

Personal Overview

Even now when people give me long litanies of verbal information the words will fragment back into “sounds” and I cannot process the words in real time it would be a mouth with sounds coming out of them but with no “meaning” – this at times can overwhelm and/or make me shutdown, ironically it is verbal overload which cases me the most pain.

Paul Isaacs

Remember that language processing is diverse. 🙂

Paul Isaacs 2014

 

 


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6 Months

Me at 6 Months Old With My Teddy

 

OVERVIEW

The Autism spectrum is a diverse spectrum of different profiles or as Donna Williams puts it “Fruit Salads” and different profiles means different presentations – I myself was diagnosed with Autism in 2010 and through recent interesting and fascinating conversations with Donna here is why I have an Autie Profile.

 

Copyright D.Williams from her Blog Differences between Aspergers and Autism ‘fruit salads’?

Fruit Salad Analogy Donna Williams

Fruit Salad Analogy Copyright D.Williams

  • higher degrees and severity of gutimmunemetabolic disorders, epilepsy and genetic anomalies impacting health systems – This is related to the family and history of cancer of both sides of my family including a recognised gene deletion 

  • mood, anxiety, compulsive disorders commonly observed since infancy – This is in my book “Living Through The Haze” in my early years I was showing signs of these issues from pre-school onwards

  • commonly amazing balance but commonly hypotonia

  • simultagnosia/meaning blindness rather than just scotopic sensitivity – Visual fragmentation and “seeing without meaning” is specifically to do with both simultagnosia, context blindness and semantic agnosia

  • verbal agnosia/meaning deafness – I have problem with filtering words with meaning they revert back sounds the larger the chunks of information

  • verbal communication impairments (aphasia, oral dyspraxia, verbal agnosia and associated echolalia and commonly secondary Selective Mutism)- “losing words within me”, having problems with articulation, patterning, themeing and feeling my own langauge (before interpartive language), reading information without meaning, echolalia and when speech was gained

  • higher severity of LD/Dyslexia/agnosias – Yes this relates to understanding/processing information

  • tendency toward OCD/Tourettes, also higher rate of Schizotypal PD, DPD is common and tends to be more severe – Yes developed OCD aged 12, tic disorder and throat clearing age 8, Schizotypal and Borderline PDs

  • higher tendency to Exposure Anxiety more than AvPD – Exposure Anxiety in Childhood/Teenage Years and  and Early Adulthood

  • higher tendency toward dissociative states (dissociation, derealisation, depersonalisation) – Yes this relates to me

  • poetry by those with autism as opposed to AS commonly indicates those with autism can have high levels of introspection, insight – Yes this does relate to me

  • ADHD extremely common co-occurrence – Hyperactivity as a child

Conclusion

Donna Williams Analogy does expand on the true diversity of Autism and all it’s different presentations I hope this helps others as much as it has helped me. 

Paul Isaacs 2014


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What are those Sounds From Your Mouth? – Autism & Language Auditory Agnosia Autism Fruit Salad D. Williams Explained Part 7

OVERVIEW

Personal account of Language/Verbal Auditory Agnosia. 🙂

Enjoy. 🙂

Using Donna Williams Fruit Salad Analogy (1995/2005)

Paul Isaacs Adult with Autism 2014