Autism spectrum resources
August 13, 2015 9:08 PM   Subscribe

What resources are useful for adults with an autism spectrum disorder (Asperger Syndrome)? Looking for books and resources oriented toward self-help, with a particular focus on cognitive/linguistic and sensory issues, though resources on social issues are welcome too.

I have either an undiagnosed autism spectrum disorder or something else with very similar characteristics. At this time, I do not want to seek a diagnosis because it's difficult for adults (as lilnublet outlines in this comment) and because I'm not looking for medical or legal accommodations. However, I've frequently found resources and advice geared toward people with autism very helpful and would like to be more concerted in an effort to find some. The feeling when I realize that other people share my "weird and unique" problems and have solutions for them is incredible!

This OP has some helpful resources for social issues so I will definitely check those out. Now, I'm wondering if there are some additional resources for that, and maybe also some resources that are more focused the non-social aspects of ASDs--processing audiovisual inputs, dealing with sensory sensitivities, etc. (For the latter, informal tips and tricks would be great too--things like having a thick, tight fleece vest to wear and a noise machine to use at night worked wonders and I wish it didn't take me so long to learn about them!)

I am not looking for fiction or for memoirs or other personal writing (there is already an Ask for that!), just non-fiction, clinical or self-help writing or other resources. i.e., what do doctors and counselors give to adults or teens who have just been diagnosed with an ASD?

Standard disclaimer, yes, I know ASDs present differently in everyone, there is no one-size-fits-all solution, etc., just want to try things on and see what fits.
posted by robot cat to Health & Fitness (4 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: Oops, this is the lilnublet comment I meant. Guess there's no such thing as proofreading too many times...
posted by robot cat at 9:12 PM on August 13, 2015

The post you linked to already mentions The Complete Guide to Asperger Syndrome, but I just wanted to second that recommendation. I've read a bunch of books on the subject lately, too much of it undersupported/woo (so many autism diets!), but you couldn't pick a better place to start than that book.
posted by thetortoise at 10:13 PM on August 13, 2015

The paper below describing some interventions that incorporate mindfulness exercises and CBT may help. From it: "Recently, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) were modified for the benefit of high-functioning individuals with autism."

MBSR is a skills-building class, meeting usually 2.5 hours a week for 8 weeks. At the end of the paper the author, a therapist, lists some published research on the effectiveness of the courses. You don't need a diagnosis to attend an MBSR class and the author may be a good resource for finding classes near you (she provides her contact info therein). I hope this helps.
posted by seaward at 11:38 PM on August 13, 2015

I've been looking into Sensory Processing Disorder for kids, and there are lots of suggestions along the lines of your tight fitting vest, including ones for adults. My understanding is that ASD and SPD fairly often co-occur. I haven't really looked at the recommendations for adults but it might be a starting point for searching. Good luck!
posted by pennypiper at 8:03 AM on August 14, 2015

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