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Question as to what extent is restricted interests are unhealthy


Well-Known Member
"Restricted Interests". Not a term I've seen used here, though it's very much one that exists in the neurological sense. Something that is far broader than the term "special interests" that most of us are more than familiar with.

One conclusion I can only draw from the following, is a sense that NT medical professionals have outlined such things implied as less-than-healthy, and in accordance with their neurological sensibilities rather than our own. So I understand why some of us on the spectrum might question just how valid this may- or may not be.


Restricted interests and repetitive behaviors may include:

  • Inflexibility of behavior, extreme difficulty coping with change
  • Being overly focused on niche subjects to the exclusion of others
  • Expecting others to be equally interested in those subjects
  • Difficulty tolerating changes in routine and new experiences
  • Sensory hypersensitivity, e.g., aversion to loud noises
  • Stereotypical movements such as hand flapping, rocking, spinning
  • Arranging things, often toys, in a very particular manner

The only thing is that DSM-5-TR and ICD-11 don't list the diagnostic criteria for Autism Spectrum Disorder in the same way as that website describes.


Well-Known Member
What are examples of "restricted interests"? I don't think I understand what that means. The only thing that comes to mind for me was TV viewing was severely restricted for me when I was a child and it was an interest of mine. As an adult, is a "restricted interest" something that's illegal?
Studying too much a bit about psychology, and listening to music and it kind of hinders the way I learn something new.

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