PDD-NOS or SPD w/ Speech Delay
My son Ethan just turned 3, my husband and I first noticed something was wrong when Ethan was 18mos.and he wasn't speaking. When he was 2 and only had about 30 single words we talked to his pediatrician and were referred to an Occupational Therapists.
She diagnosed him with Sensory Processing Disorder with a speech delay, she was able to tell that most of his behavior was because of sensory issues, where as I just thought that his behavior problems were just terrible twos and what I thought was just a very difficult personality because he had been very difficult almost from birth.
I have an aunt who works at a school for children with developmental disabilities and after my son got the SPD diagnosis she started to insist that that he was autistic because he acted just like every kid in her class and that the OT just gave him a SPD diagnosis because it was easier. Also that she (the OT) wasn't qualified to make a diagnosis, only a neurologist could do that.
To make a long story short the neurologist gave him a diagnosis of PDD-NOS which puts him on the autism spectrum. He specifically said that my son does not have autism but that since he is exhibiting some symptoms (mainly two- delayed speech and delayed imaginative play which have both seriously improved over this last year), he implied that my son would have a better chance qualifying for service provided by the government and also the therapy he's gotten so far is covered by my insurance. He also said that he would always have PDD-NOS but that he would eventually grow out of the symptoms.
The thing is the therapists and teachers at his school (including my aunt) consider PDD-NOS to be autism and I honestly don't believe in my heart that my son is autistic but that without a diagnosis on the AS that he probably would not get the help he needs for his sensory and speech problems.
Is this something that seems to happen alot and should I just let it be?