My DD will be 2 in December. We have been in EI since she was 17 months. She has a fine motor delay as well as a receptive/expressive language delay. She had an OT eval and was also dx with sensory modulation difficulties including auditory processing/oral defensiveness along with low muscle tone (though surprisingly her gross motor skills are great despite that). She receives OT/speech weekly. In that time she's made some gains but I have some major concerns. She does seem to spend a lot of time in her own world though it seems to be improving with age somewhat. She hand flaps when she gets excited sometimes. She does weird things with her fingers and babbles to herself a lot. She is sometimes unresponsive to her name and listens to instructions inconsistently. She has signs/words that she can use but mostly communicates through pointing. Most of her language is simply labeling stuff like saying duck when she sees a picture of one. She rarely uses signs/language to communicate needs.
My pedi, OT, and SLP all have told me she they would be suprised if she ever got an autism dx due to the fact that she is incredibly social, plays appropriately with toys/other kids, doesn't have any behavioral issues and doesn't exhibit any repetitive behavior during play. From what I understand, autism is hard to diagnose before three so I'm not sure why they're trying to convince me she's not? To me, she seems to definitely have some red flags for it.
My question is would someone through EI be able to dx autism or can only a neuro do that? Could they treat her for potential autism without the dx? If so, what kind of treatment would be most fitting considering her issues? She's passed the mchat, but is there anything else they can do to detect? We have an appointment for 6 months from now with the neurologist but hoping to get in earlier since we're on the cancellation list. Waiting and not knowing is the worst.
With my son, he was showing signs of global apraxia at 1.5 so we started him in OT/speech therapy. Within a year his fine motor delays were gone, his speech was at an age appropriate level and is only left with an artic delay so I know intervening early can make a huge difference. I just want to make sure DD is getting the same opportunities as well and I feel that waiting might miss a huge window where we could make some serious progress.