My son will be 3 next month. We have a sensory diagnosis, with some speech challenges diagnosed as well. We go for our ADOS autism screening on Monday. I'm trying to mentally and emotionally prepare for it. Can anyone give me any idea of what to expect from the ADOS?
DS is verbal, and speaks mostly in 2-3 word sentences, but also has a lot of echolalia mixed in there. I call him the little drummer boy because if you let him, he would drum his entire day away. And he will drum on anything. A tree outside can become a drum. The leaves up high are the symbols, and he'll find a stone or something to be the base drum. It is quite cute actually, and most people who see him do it get a kick out of it...accept me. He can now be redirected from the drums, but we've been doing FloorTime therapy for about six months so that did not happen "naturally." He has been known to zone out as well, but he is easier to re-engage now that we have been doing FT as well. But, if he feels stressed, much of the new skills he's learned begin to fade away. He also tends to lose his words and revert back to sound effects and beat boxing when he is stressed as well. He will just start creating random drum beats "boom boom pshshsh boom boom boom pshshshs" and ignoring you. But, once he calms himself down, he comes back and engages well.
He does do pretend play, but very basic. He may decide his elephant wants to go down the slide, or that it's hungry and feed it. With a lot of floortime work I've gotten him to start spontaneously using his microwave on his pretend kitchen, but that is only occasionally.
I guess I'm sharing all of that because I'm mentally categorizing all of the "concerning" behaviors as I prepare for the ADOS evaluation. It is our first step in finding out officially if he is or is not on the spectrum. We have an OT who says no, an ST who says maybe, and another ST who evaluated him recently who said he is because of the echolalia, and the restricted interests in drumming. He is also gifted in music. If he is listening to a song, he will begin to point out bongos, violin, etc as he hears it. He has also learned to play several adult songs on the drums. This is also being pointed to as a "symptom" of ASD.
This is such a stressful time. Any advice from mom's who have been through this would be great. I also want to prepare my little guy if I can so he is not overwhelmed.