Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified

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What to expect

Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS)

Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) is similar to Autistic Spectrum Disorder. However it does not fall into one of the existing categories of Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

What is Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified?

PDD-NOS is a pervasive developmental disorder, it is classed as being on or similar to the autistic spectrum, however does not fully fit the criteria for Rett syndrome, autism or Asperger syndrome.

Children with PDD-NOS may vary in their symptoms and severity of their symptoms as it is classed as a spectrum disorder. Children with PDD-NOS will have difficulties with two main areas of development which include social interaction and communication skills.

Children with PDD-NOS may experience the following difficulties or symptoms:

  • Unable to make genuine connections with peers at school.
  • Difficulty reading non-verbal cues e.g. facial expression and tone of voice to convey emotion.
  • Inappropriate responses to emotional communication e.g. laughter and crying.
  • Thinking very literally and not always understanding humour or sarcasm.
  • Language delay
  • Limited vocabulary (words they know and say)
  • Repetitive or restricted language
  • Poor non-verbal communication (eye-contact and facial expression)
  • A common characteristic of PDD-NOS is difficulty understanding the difference between pronouns e.g. you and me when talking in a conversation.

Speech and language therapy will help to support a child with PDD-NOS in their use of language both in conversation and in social use.

What causes Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified?

There is no known cause of PDD-NOS and it is thought to be the result of a combination of environmental, brain development and genetic factors.

What problems caused by Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified can speech and language therapy help with?

Speech and language therapy can support the following difficulties, which a child with PDD-NOS may experience:

How is Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified diagnosed?

PDD-NOS is usually harder to diagnose than autism and is often diagnosed after the age of four. A speech and language assessment will be carried out to assess your childs speech and language abilities, this assessment will help determine what difficulties need to be addressed in therapy.

The speech and language therapist will carry out an initial appointment which will involve the following:

  • A discussion with you about your childs speech and language abilities and any concerns you may have about these skills.
  • Taking a case history regarding your childs development.
  • A general observation of your childs speech, language, interaction and play skills.
  • A detailed assessment of your childs language, play and interaction skills. Assessment may include asking your child to follow verbal instructions and name pictures.

How does speech and language therapy help children with Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified?

Speech and language therapy for a child with PDD-NOS will help to improve on the childs specific speech and language difficulties. As it is classed as a spectrum disorder the symptoms and severity of symptoms will vary from child to child. It is well known that early intervention for PDD-NOS has benefits in achieving the childs maximum communicative potential in both the school and home environment.

Speech and language therapy for children with PDD-NOS will focus on maximising the childs communicative potential. Specific aims often focus on expressive and receptive language skills, social skills and use of language in a social interaction. Speech and language therapy will benefit a child with PDD-NOS when interacting with others and help them to communicate their needs effectively.

What would speech and language therapy treatment for Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified involve?

The speech and language therapist will initially carry out a detailed speech and language assessment of your childs speech and language abilities. This assessment will help identify what areas of speech and language need to be worked on in therapy. Speech and language therapy may include:

You will also be given the opportunity to share your views and concerns and the opportunity to discuss what you would like to work on in therapy.

How do I arrange a speech and language therapy assessment for Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified?

To arrange an initial assessment for your child with one our speech and language therapists please email office@slt.co.uk or call 0330 0885 643.

Summary

Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified is a developmental condition which shares similarities with autistic spectrum disorder. A child with pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified may experience a variety of speech and language difficulties. Speech and language therapy will benefit a child with PDD-NOS by targeting their specific needs and maximising their ability to communicate effectively. If you feel you and your child may benefit from speech and language therapy then please feel free to contact us.

If you require an appointment with one our speech and language therapists then please contact us on 0330 0885 643, or email office@slt.co.uk


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To speak to a Speech and Language Therapist or to book an appointment, call us on 0161 883 0111 or email office@slt.co.uk

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