Neurodivergent Glossary for Terms and Vocabulary
Why a neurodivergent glossary? Because autistic people tend to use idiosyncratic language and more neologisms than neurotypicals. This essentially means we make up our own words or use words in abnormal ways. Thanks to that habit, I know there are some words that get used on this blog that may not be familiar to everyone. Putting my autistic problem-solving skills to use, I am building a glossary so you can stop asking yourself “what does spicy brain mean?”
Let me know what I missed in the comments!
Alexithymia- a neuropsychological phenomenon that makes it difficult for an individual to identify and describe their own feelings
Autism Collections– autistic people have a tendency to collect or even hoard things. This can range from toys and rocks to bottle caps and cute erasers (guilty.)
Dopamine- Dopamine is a neurotransmitter involved in the reward center of the brain, regulation of attention, and feelings of pleasure. People with ADHD have at least one defective gene that makes it difficult for neurons to respond to dopamine the way they should.
Good/Bad Sounds- Sounds that are upsetting or painful to us=bad sounds. Sounds we find pleasing or humorous and may want to repeat many times=good sounds.
Echolalia-repetition of a spoken word or sound
Executive Dysfunction-For a person to act on something, their brain needs to send the right signals to the rest of the body for the body to be able to act. Executive dysfunction is when those signals from the brain aren’t making it to the body the way they should be. Neurodivergent people struggle with executive dysfunction which affects our abilities to organize and prioritize thoughts, tasks, and activities, make decisions, and manage time efficiently.
Neurodivergent/Neurospicy-a term referring to those who have differences in their brain chemistry that affects how their brain works. Can include medical disorders, learning disabilities, and mental illnesses.
Neurotypical-those with typical brain patterns not in the neurodivergent category
Mouth Feel- For many neurodivergent people, issues surrounding food are based around how something feels in our mouth. Food or drinks we like have good mouth feels whereas ones we don’t like due to texture or taste have bad mouth feels.
Serotonin– A neurotransmitter with key roles in mood, sleep, nausea, digestion, sexual desire, bone health, blood clotting, and wound healing. People with ADHD typically have a chronic serotonin deficit.
Spice Blend-Everyone has a unique combination of conditions and experiences that makes us different from one another. Thus, every neurodivergent person has their own unique spice blend.
Spicy Brain-an umbrella term for the neurodivergent community as well as those with mental illness. Or both, which is what makes their brain so spicy.
The ’tism– Autism
T-Rexxing-The autistic urge to hold your arms like a T-Rex. No, this doesn’t mean we walk around acting like dinosaurs. We just tend to end up with our arms in that position while doing other things.