When discussing autism spectrum disorder (ASD), there can be some confusion in the terminology used to describe developmentally challenged individuals. That’s because, on the one hand, autism exists on a spectrum (hence the name), and on the other hand, not every developmentally challenged individual is on the spectrum. Two terms that are often encountered are neurotypical vs. neurodivergent.
- Neurotypical is defined as an individual with normal brain development and functioning who is not on the autism spectrum.
- Neurodivergent is defined as an individual (usually a child) who is on the autism spectrum and displays atypical development or behavior.
It can be challenging to tell a neurotypical child from a neurodivergent child. A neurotypical child typically develops skills and behaviors according to a typical timeline and at a typical rate, while a neurodivergent child may not. Camp Worth offers autism parent training in Texas—call 855.915.2545 today to learn more.
Neurotypical vs. Neurodivergent
How Prevalent Is Neurodiversity in Children?
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is estimated that 1 in 54 children in the United States has been identified with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
- In 2020, around 4.5 million people under the age of 21 were reported to be living with ASD in the US.
- It has also been estimated that boys are five times more likely than girls to be diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.
- Boys aged 8 years old accounted for 69% of all children recorded as having an ASD diagnosis by 2016/17, compared to 31% among females.
What Are Some Signs of Neurodiversity in Children?
Some signs that a child is neurodivergent can include difficulty in social situations, difficulty communicating or expressing emotions, non-verbal communication difficulties, sensory sensitivities, and repetitive behaviors. Neurodivergent children may also experience difficulty with schoolwork or performing tasks that require a lot of focus.
At What Age Do Signs of Neurodiversity in Children Appear?
The signs of neurodiversity in children can start to appear as early as 18 months old. It is important to note that all children develop at different rates, and these signs may not be present in all children with an autism spectrum disorder.
What Therapies Are Best for Neurotypical vs. Neurodivergent Children?
Therapies for neurotypical children typically involve helping them to develop healthy coping mechanisms and skills for managing their emotions, relationships, and social situations. Therapies may also include play therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), or family counseling.
For neurodivergent children, behavioral therapies or behavioral interventions typically focus on the following:
- Working on communication skills
- Developing self-regulation techniques
- Utilizing sensory integration tools and strategies
- Learning social skills
- Providing support for the individual and family
Other therapies that may be beneficial for neurodivergent individuals include occupational therapy, speech-language therapy, and social skills groups.
Reach Out to Camp Worth Today
Overall, it is essential to understand the difference between neurotypical and neurodivergent children so they can be supported in the best way possible. By understanding the needs of each child, parents and educators can ensure that interventions are tailored to their individual needs and that those needs are being met in a productive manner.
For parents of children with ASD, Camp Worth in Forth Worth, Texas offers an educational program, autism parent training program, food and nutrition program, behavioral interventions, and behavioral therapy. With proper guidance and support, your child can reach their full potential.
Our comprehensive programs and services for children ages 11-17 include the following:
- Medication management
- Individual therapy program
- Family counseling program
- Social skills groups
- Functional skills training program
Contact our compassionate, professional staff today at 855.915.2545 or reach out online. We can answer any questions about our programs and services and are ready to help you and your child grow, thrive, and live their best life.