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The role of linguistic and cognitive factors in emotion recognition difficulties in children with ASD, ADHD or DLD.
Int J Lang Commun Disord. 2020 03; 55(2):231-242.IJ

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Many children with neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or developmental language disorder (DLD) have difficulty recognizing and understanding emotions. However, the reasons for these difficulties are currently not well understood.

AIMS

To compare the emotion recognition skills of children with neurodevelopmental disorders as well as those children's skills with the skills of their typically developing (TD) age peers. Also, to identify the role of underlying factors in predicting emotion recognition skills.

METHODS & PROCEDURES

The 6-10-year-old children (n = 50) who participated in the study had either ASD, ADHD or DLD and difficulties recognizing emotions from face and/or in voice. TD age peers (n = 106) served as controls. Children's skills were tested using six forced-choice tasks with emotional nonsense words, meaningful emotional sentences, the FEFA 2 test, photographs, video clips and a task in which facial expressions and tones of voice had to be matched. Expressive vocabulary, rapid serial naming, auditory and visual working memory and Theory of Mind skills were explored as possible explanatory factors of the emotion recognition difficulties of the diagnosed children.

OUTCOMES & RESULTS

Children with ASD, ADHD or DLD did not significantly differ from each other in their linguistic or cognitive skills. Moreover, there were only minor differences between children with these diagnoses in recognizing facial expressions and emotional tone of voice and matching the two. The only significant difference was that children with ADHD recognized facial expressions in photographs better than children with DLD. The participants with diagnoses scored significantly lower than the controls in all but one emotion recognition tasks presented. According to the linear regression analysis, first-order Theory of Mind skills predicted the delay relative to typical development in the recognition of facial expressions in the FEFA 2 test, and expressive vocabulary and working memory skills together predicted the delay in the recognition of emotions in the matching task.

CONCLUSIONS & IMPLICATIONS

Children with ASD, ADHD or DLD showed very similar emotion recognition skills and were also found to be significantly delayed in their development of these skills. Some predictive factors related to linguistic and cognitive skills were found for these difficulties. Information about impaired emotion recognition and underlying linguistic and cognitive skills helps to select intervention procedures. Without this information, therapy might unnecessarily focus on only symptoms.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Logopedics, Abo Akademi University, Turku, Finland. Faculty of Humanities/Research Unit of Logopedics and Child Language Research Center, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.Division of Operative Care, Medical Research Center Oulu, Oulu University Hospital and University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.Department of Education, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland.Faculty of Humanities/Research Unit of Logopedics and Child Language Research Center, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland. PEDEGO Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland. Medical Research Center Oulu, Oulu, Finland. Oulu University Hospital, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Oulu, Oulu, Finland.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

31797474

Citation

Löytömäki, Joanna, et al. "The Role of Linguistic and Cognitive Factors in Emotion Recognition Difficulties in Children With ASD, ADHD or DLD." International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, vol. 55, no. 2, 2020, pp. 231-242.
Löytömäki J, Ohtonen P, Laakso ML, et al. The role of linguistic and cognitive factors in emotion recognition difficulties in children with ASD, ADHD or DLD. Int J Lang Commun Disord. 2020;55(2):231-242.
Löytömäki, J., Ohtonen, P., Laakso, M. L., & Huttunen, K. (2020). The role of linguistic and cognitive factors in emotion recognition difficulties in children with ASD, ADHD or DLD. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 55(2), 231-242. https://doi.org/10.1111/1460-6984.12514
Löytömäki J, et al. The Role of Linguistic and Cognitive Factors in Emotion Recognition Difficulties in Children With ASD, ADHD or DLD. Int J Lang Commun Disord. 2020;55(2):231-242. PubMed PMID: 31797474.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - The role of linguistic and cognitive factors in emotion recognition difficulties in children with ASD, ADHD or DLD. AU - Löytömäki,Joanna, AU - Ohtonen,Pasi, AU - Laakso,Marja-Leena, AU - Huttunen,Kerttu, Y1 - 2019/12/03/ PY - 2018/07/01/received PY - 2019/09/12/revised PY - 2019/10/21/accepted PY - 2019/12/5/pubmed PY - 2020/12/15/medline PY - 2019/12/5/entrez KW - delay KW - development KW - developmental language disorder KW - emotion KW - facial expressions KW - neurobiological KW - prosody KW - specific language impairment KW - tone of voice SP - 231 EP - 242 JF - International journal of language & communication disorders JO - Int J Lang Commun Disord VL - 55 IS - 2 N2 - BACKGROUND: Many children with neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or developmental language disorder (DLD) have difficulty recognizing and understanding emotions. However, the reasons for these difficulties are currently not well understood. AIMS: To compare the emotion recognition skills of children with neurodevelopmental disorders as well as those children's skills with the skills of their typically developing (TD) age peers. Also, to identify the role of underlying factors in predicting emotion recognition skills. METHODS & PROCEDURES: The 6-10-year-old children (n = 50) who participated in the study had either ASD, ADHD or DLD and difficulties recognizing emotions from face and/or in voice. TD age peers (n = 106) served as controls. Children's skills were tested using six forced-choice tasks with emotional nonsense words, meaningful emotional sentences, the FEFA 2 test, photographs, video clips and a task in which facial expressions and tones of voice had to be matched. Expressive vocabulary, rapid serial naming, auditory and visual working memory and Theory of Mind skills were explored as possible explanatory factors of the emotion recognition difficulties of the diagnosed children. OUTCOMES & RESULTS: Children with ASD, ADHD or DLD did not significantly differ from each other in their linguistic or cognitive skills. Moreover, there were only minor differences between children with these diagnoses in recognizing facial expressions and emotional tone of voice and matching the two. The only significant difference was that children with ADHD recognized facial expressions in photographs better than children with DLD. The participants with diagnoses scored significantly lower than the controls in all but one emotion recognition tasks presented. According to the linear regression analysis, first-order Theory of Mind skills predicted the delay relative to typical development in the recognition of facial expressions in the FEFA 2 test, and expressive vocabulary and working memory skills together predicted the delay in the recognition of emotions in the matching task. CONCLUSIONS & IMPLICATIONS: Children with ASD, ADHD or DLD showed very similar emotion recognition skills and were also found to be significantly delayed in their development of these skills. Some predictive factors related to linguistic and cognitive skills were found for these difficulties. Information about impaired emotion recognition and underlying linguistic and cognitive skills helps to select intervention procedures. Without this information, therapy might unnecessarily focus on only symptoms. SN - 1460-6984 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31797474/The_role_of_linguistic_and_cognitive_factors_in_emotion_recognition_difficulties_in_children_with_ASD_ADHD_or_DLD_ DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -