The 7 Types Of Neurodevelopmental Disorders (symptoms And Causes)

When we think about mental disorders or problems, it is easy for problems such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or phobias to come to mind. ADHD or autism. Next we will review What are the types of neurodevelopmental disorders? the category to which they belong.

Neurodevelopmental disorders

Neurodevelopmental disorders or neurological development disorders are the set of mental disorders and difficulties that have their origin in non-neurotypical development of the brain or in the presence of alterations or lesions in its maturation.

They therefore have their origin in early childhood or during the development process, and the first symptoms can generally be detected early.

The alterations caused by these disorders generate difficulties of varying intensity in the processes of adaptation and social participation and/or in carrying out basic activities for survival. The subject’s activity is limited or altered compared to what would be common in other subjects with the same age and conditions.

Types of neurodevelopmental disorders in the DSM-5

The label of neurodevelopmental disorders encompasses a large number of disorders that share the aforementioned characteristics, although they present notable differences between them depending on the aspects that are affected.

Next we will observe the main groups of neurodevelopmental disorders contemplated by the latest version of one of the most important reference manuals, the DSM-5. For ease of understanding, disorders caused by substance use or medical illnesses are not included.

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1. Intellectual disabilities

Intellectual disability is considered one of the neurodevelopmental disorders, due to the appearance of deficiencies or difficulties in intellectual functions. and in adaptive behavior in its conceptual, practical or social aspects which result in a possible limitation of the subject’s functioning in one or more vital areas unless they have specific support.

Also included in this group is global developmental delay, which is diagnosed when it is not possible to assess the severity of the disorder in children under five years of age, despite the fact that it is observed that they do not meet the expected developmental milestones. This diagnosis is provisional.

2. Communication disorders

Communication disorders are those neurodevelopmental disorders in which the subject is not able to communicate properly or learn to do it despite having sufficient mental capacities to do so.

Within this group of disorders we find language disorder (formerly SLI), phonological disorder, pragmatic communication disorder or stuttering or speech fluency disorder that begins in childhood.

3. Autism spectrum disorder

Autism spectrum disorder is characterized by the presence of difficulties in communication and interpersonal interaction, repetitive and restrictive patterns of behavior and interests. Those who suffer from it have difficulties understanding the rules that govern social interactions and capturing and expressing feelings, They usually have literal oral language and it is difficult for them to grasp subtleties and figurative uses of this, to present a preference and need for routine and monotony, and to accept changes poorly.

Although different disorders were previously distinguished within this spectrum, such as Kanner-type autism and Asperger’s, Currently it is considered a single disorder that encompasses them (albeit with specifiers).

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4. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

Another of the best-known neurodevelopmental disorders, ADHD is a disorder characterized by the presence of typical symptoms of intention (such as difficulty maintaining attention, making errors due to lack of attention, high distractibility, failure to complete tasks, loss and forgetting of objects and activities mental absence…) and/or hyperactivity (talks excessively, motor restlessness, has difficulty staying seated or waiting turns, interrupts other people’s activities…).

Symptoms of intent or hyperactivity may predominate, or there may be a mixed presentation.

It is also possible to find cases in which there are no cases of hyperactivity but only of intention, which is now called attention deficit disorder or ADD.

5. Specific learning disorder

A specific learning disorder is understood to be one in which the subject manifests difficulties in the acquisition and use of academic skills, such as reading, writing and mathematics.

The individual has difficulties when reading, interpreting and using language (has problems, for example, with grammar and spelling) and/or mathematical concepts. These difficulties are above what would be expected for someone of the age and intellectual capacity of the subjects interfering with their academic activity.

6. Motor disorders

Another of the large groups of neurodevelopmental disorders are motor disorders, in which there are difficulties in aspects linked to movement such as coordination or involuntary movements occur.

Within these disorders we find the developmental coordination disorder, stereotyped movements and tic disorders In this last group we find Tourette’s disorder, along with persistent motor or vocal tics and transient tics.

7. Others

This label is used in those disorders linked to neurodevelopmental alterations that cause the subject to be affected in one or some vital areas, but that do not meet the diagnostic criteria of any of the previous groups of disorders.

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For example, those disorders linked to maternal substance use during pregnancy or in those cases in which there is not enough information to classify the disorder in question.