Asperger’s syndrome is a form of autism and is a lifelong disability that affects how a person makes sense of the world, processes information and relates to other people. Autism is often described as a spectrum disorder because the condition affects people in many different ways and to varying degrees.
Asperger’s syndrome is mostly a hidden disability. This means that you cannot tell that someone has the condition from their outward appearance. People with the condition have difficulties in three main areas:
- social communication
- social interaction
- social imagination
While there are similarities with autism, people with Asperger’s syndrome have fewer problems with speaking and are often of average, or above average, intelligence. They do not usually have the accompanying learning disabilities associated with autism, but they may have specific learning difficulties. These may include dyslexia and dyspraxia or other conditions such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and epilepsy.
Similar to our approach to the ASD, cognitive and behaviour psychotherapies, when adapted to the specific individual needs, can provide the right support and encouragement. A strengths-focused psychological therapy can empower people with Asperger’s and enable them to lead full and independent lives.