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Discussion Starter #1
DS is almost 18 months and lately he has been shaking his arms a lot. It is sort of arm flapping, and sort of just arm shaking. He does it usually with his arms in front of his body, not off to the side.<br><br>
Is this normal? Why would he be doing this?
 

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Hi,<br><br>
Arm flapping/ shaking is considered to be a common self stimulating activity (I used to do developmental evaluations on children under three). Many adults have self stim behaviors too (you know, the foot shakers, pen tappers, etc.). By itself it's probably nothing to worry about at this point. If it's coupled with other behaviors such as unusual interest in spinning objects, lack of pretend play or sensory defensive behaviors (aversions to walking on grass or eating certain foods) it could be an indicator for autism. He could also just be flapping his arms because it feels silly <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">
 

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My boy's been flapping since he was six month old and still flaps sometimes, usually when he's twirling or being silly. I think it's just an easy way for him to burn extra energy and express excitement. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Thanks to both of you. Right now, it seems to be his only weird behavior. He doesn't really have an sensory aversions that I can tell. He does love to spin wheels though (on cars and such). Is that a cause for concern?<br><br>
I know a bit about Autism and he doesn't have a lot of the symptoms. He is very friendly and very much loves his mama! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> He does get upset if I leave, etc.
 

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I was thinking about my response to you earlier and thought I may have come across as alarmist. I'm not trying to, I'm just passing on information that may or may not be helpful!<br><br>
It's not uncommon for kids who arm flap to also like to spin wheels. Ask yourself if he is using the toy functionally (like making the car go) or is he simply more interested in spinning? I'm not sure where you live, but you could have him evaluated by child development professional in your home if you live in the States if you continue to notice behavior that seems a bit out of place. As far as autism is concerned. . .When I first started working with children with special needs, I prayed not to be assigned a child with autism because I was so scared and had in my mind what autism looked like. LUCKILY I had plenty of opportunities to work with beautiful, loving children who connected with their parents (and me, I'd like to think, lol) to see that "autism" is a diagnosis. It isn't a person. There are so many variations of this particular disorder that go from children and adults whose lives are minimally disrupted to others who need major intervention. There are related diagnoses to autism, such as Asperger's Syndrome which describes kids who we've probably all known as quirky in our lives falling under an umbrella with a collection of behaviors. Obviously, I am in no way diagnosing your child, but I hope to pass on support and education to others who have questions about their children's development. I miss that part of my job tremendously. Please let me know how things are going!<br><br>
Hilary
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hilary, you were not alarmist at all; the thought had crossed my mind many times. Christian loves to spin the wheels on his cars, but he will also drive them along the floor as well. And, I forgot to mention, but he also has a fascination with light switches (but I'm thinking that is common for toddlers???). I really don't see most of the classic autism signs in him, just those three things. He is very lovable and loves to be around people. He's very social.<br><br>
But, I am going to bring this up to his Dr at his 18 month check up.
 
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