Autism And Motor-Skill Problems

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This week, while reading articles on NPR, I came across an article that perhaps focused the most on my son:  Writing Study Ties Autism To Motor-Skill Problems.  Basically the handwriting of several autistic children were compared, and it was found that most autistic children had trouble writing.  This isn't anything new, but the reason why they can't write was interesting:  the motor planning capacity in the brain was diminished, making fine motor skills difficult.What are fine motor skills?  Well, handling a pencil is one example.  Another is buttoning a coat, or zipping up a zipper.  Another example can be the capability to tell the tongue to move properly to control sound, rendering speech.  Children without fine motor skills tend to appear clumsy, and are unable to control their facial expressions in social situations.  Starting to sound familiar?So what does it matter?  Parents with autistic children already know they have these symptoms, as they represent classic autistic behavior.  But what it represents is a method of identifying autism sooner, and therefore finding a way to help children at an earlier age.There was no mention of a gene or other cause for this particular symptom, but that doesn't matter at this stage.  It's a relationship that has been established, and can be explored more directly.  If you are interested in reading the article, it is linked above.