FACTORS OF SEXUAL BEHAVIOR IN ADOLESCENTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER
This study is devoted to the problem of sexual functioning among adolescents with autism spectrum disorder.
The main goal of the current research is to explore the factors, related to behavioral displays of sexuality of adolescents with ASD. The theoretical analysis of causes that may provoke inappropriate sexual behavior of individuals with ASD is given. The hypothesis that such factors as intelligence level, social functioning level, sexual knowledge and parenting style can be related with sexual behavior of adolescents with ASD is tested in the current study.
The adolescents with ASD and their peers without the developmental disorder were found to be significantly different at the displays of inappropriate sexual behavior, the factor of diagnosis showed a great impact. The current study also reveals that higher levels of social functioning and sexual education of individuals with ASD are related to more adequate sexual behavior. As for the intelligence level, it did not show a significant effect on the displays of sexual behavior among individuals with ASD. The relation between parenting styles, which are common in families with individuals with ASD, and sexual behavior displays were also discussed in the article.
In conclusion, the author outlines the importance of adequate sexual education and healthy parenting styles for an appropriate sexual functioning of adolescents with ASD.
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