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Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 4/2013

01-04-2013

The Relationship between Sensory Sensitivity and Autistic Traits in the General Population

Auteurs: Ashley E. Robertson, David R. Simmons

Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders | Uitgave 4/2013

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Abstract

Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) tend to have sensory processing difficulties (Baranek et al. in J Child Psychol Psychiatry 47:591–601, 2006). These difficulties include over- and under-responsiveness to sensory stimuli, and problems modulating sensory input (Ben-Sasson et al. in J Autism Dev Disorders 39:1–11, 2009). As those with ASD exist at the extreme end of a continuum of autistic traits that is also evident in the general population, we investigated the link between ASD and sensory sensitivity in the general population by administering two questionnaires online to 212 adult participants. Results showed a highly significant positive correlation (r = .775, p < .001) between number of autistic traits and the frequency of sensory processing problems. These data suggest a strong link between sensory processing and autistic traits in the general population, which in turn potentially implicates sensory processing problems in social interaction difficulties.

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Note that a self-report sensory questionnaire (The Adult/Adolescent Sensory Profile: AASP) has previously been published by Brown and Dunn (2002). However, this instrument was not specifically designed to target the sensory issues associated with ASD populations, and contains some questions which overlap with those on autism diagnostic instruments, which made it unsuitable for our purposes. In addition, our questionnaire assessed reported sensitivity separately in the proprioceptive, vestibular, taste and smell modalities (these modalities are combined into ‘taste/smell’ and ‘movement’ in the AASP), as well as including items for visual, auditory and touch sensitivity. Furthermore, we did not include items on ‘activity level’, which is assessed in the AASP.
 
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Metagegevens
Titel
The Relationship between Sensory Sensitivity and Autistic Traits in the General Population
Auteurs
Ashley E. Robertson
David R. Simmons
Publicatiedatum
01-04-2013
Uitgeverij
Springer US
Gepubliceerd in
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders / Uitgave 4/2013
Print ISSN: 0162-3257
Elektronisch ISSN: 1573-3432
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-012-1608-7