For those of you who haven’t followed my blog, I’ve spent a lot of time working with Christopher, my nephew on the autism spectrum (aka A Sweet Dude). When Christopher lived here a couple of years ago, he had to put something in his mouth, preferably his finger. At that time, we replaced it with a neckband and chewie.
On his recent summer stay, I noticed his new replacement behavior. As Christopher has matured, and most likely in response to strong criticism, he has replaced chewing with hand movements, typically flexing his hand open and shut. He doesn’t try to hide those movements and seems unaware of them. I’ve seen a major increase in flexing when he’s anxious. However, this action could be hidden by a desk or table, which may reduce scrutiny by others.