Asperger's Symptoms and Stress

There needs to be more awarenesss about the affects between anxiety and Asperger's symptoms. I am not writing this as a psychologist. I am writing as an Aspie blogger. But these sites reveal research which truly explains my experiences. Let's hope it helps other Aspies too.

Better Health (Victoria) says disruptions to routine can cause anxiety. One reason for this is the many questions that arise when changing routines or practices. If you got used to doing things one way, there is more understanding of it. Outcomes are predictable. But a massive change in practice forces people into the unknown. New things in themselves are not wrong, but the results can be. What if a new thing makes you feel uncomfortable? How do you know of this new thing will work just as well? Figuring that out takes time.

Let's use an example for context. Many of us have a regular place for eating out. Or a regular food. I used to always go to Subway for lunch during college. More specifically, I would get a pizza flavoured 6 inch Italian bread sandwich with sweet chilli sauce and mayo. Why does that matter? Why did I bother telling you this? Because I got it for every single lunch during my first year at uni. Everything else might be new and confusing, constantly changing. But my sandwich was the one safe predictable thing in the day. You can imagine my feeling of loss when Gloria Jeans took away the pomegranate ice tea. I am still recovering.

Tony Attwood spoke about the calming effect of rituals and interests. He described Aspies' focused interest as a "block" or distraction from stressful things. Everyone does something enjoyable for the same reason. This is just a benefit that overlaps with Asperger's. Maybe study for me is a mental getaway. I'm not good at everything, but marketing just makes sense to me. I could read endlessly about how different consumers are researched or messages are communicated. Every Aspie has a different focused interest.

The BBC reported that people with Asperger's may not have the typical surge in a stress-management hormone in the morning. This hormone is called Cortisol. BBC quoted Mark Brosnan as observing this hormone even decreases later in the day. So an aspie might not get that agility to quickly attack problems on the second they happen. A calmer paced approach might be more appropriate. 

These are a few ideas on how Asperger's relates to stress. There is more to read from a quick Google search on aspie traits causing stress. But there should be more widespread writing on how stress influences aspie behaviour.


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