Autism Characteristics

Autism Awareness

Below you will find a list of differing characteristics a child/adult with Autism may possess.The characteristics each child/adult displays are unique to each person. Therefore what is evident in one child/adult may not be evident in another.

I have obtained the below list from the Irish Autism Action website

Language Communication

• Has flat or limited facial expressions
• Does not use gestures
• Rarely initiates conversation
• Fails to imitate actions or sounds
• May have little or no speech or may be quite verbal
• Repeats or echoes words and/or phrases
• Uses unusual intonation or rhythm
• Seems not to understand word meanings or understand implied meaning but uses words literally


Social Interaction

• Spends time alone rather than with others
• Less responsive to social cues such as eye contact or smiles
• Seeks social contact in unusual ways
• Uses an adults hand as a tool


• Lack of spontaneous or imaginative play
• Does not imitate others actions
• Is very attached to certain toys or objects and plays with them in an unusual way
• Does not play turn-taking games
• Play is repetitive


• Is upset by and resists change to routines or environment
• Drifts aimlessly
• Exhibits strong and inflexible interests
• Throws tantrums for no apparent reason
• May he over/hyperactive or passive


Sensory Impairment
• Sometimes appears to have hearing problems
• Exhibits panic or pain related to specific sounds
• Plays with light and reflection
• Flicks fingers before eyes
• Pulls away when touched
• Strongly avoids certain smells, foods, clothes etc
• Is attracted to certain patterns/textures/odours.
• May spin, whirl, bang head or torso, bite wrist or hand, bounces or jumps, climbs
• Exhibits unusual or non-response to pain, heat or cold
• Toileting problems