Friday, December 17, 2010

Developmental Concerns-Who can Help?

If you have any concerns about the development of you child in a certain area, it is so important to get it checked out early.  Early Intervention has shown to help so many children.  The earlier you recognize a developmental delay in your child the more you can do to help them reach their full potential.  Watch for signs as they play, learn, speech, and act.
There are many places to turn.  Here is some that I have found helpful, and please if you know of others, please share.
1.  I would start with your family physician or pediatrician.  Tell your doctor your concerns and see if they see the same thing and have suggestions or local places you can get help.  If they tell you to not worry, they will grow out of it, it may be true but if you are still concerned I would get a second opinion.  Mothers are with their child the most in a day and know what makes your child tick.  If your gut tells you there is a problem, find someone who can help.
2.  Up to 3 Early Intervention-This center is based at Utah State University but is only one of fifteen early intervention programs in Utah.  They offer families many services including, a full assessment of your child's health and developmental status, then they offer many classes, therapies, and strategies based on your child's needs.
3.  For Children over three years old go to your local public school.  Every school is different in what they do for preschool children who need extra services before kindergarten.  For example in the Logan School District they have a preschool devoted to children with developmental or speech delays.  They continually are testing and admitting students all through the year if they qualify.  The school is Riverside Preschool.  Cache County School district does it within the elementary schools.  Making a few phone calls to the local schools and the school district you could find what services and testing is offered in your area.

4.  Check out the CDC webpage.  It has so many resources and information at your fingertips for parents about developmental milestones and warning signs you should watch for.  This may answer many questions right at home.

5.  Head Start serves children 0-5 years old of low income families.  Eligibility is based on income level.  They even have a home visit program used to help pregnant women educate and then later bond with their baby.

I've been doing a preschool this year in my home and I've seen a few children who have shown signs that they need a little extra help. It's hard to tell a parent concerns but on the other hand it's doing the child a disservice if you choose to ignore signs.  You may have a child in your daycare or preschool, a neighbor, niece/nephew, or grandchild who you can see may have some developmental delays.  This is so hard because we are worried about offending someone.  But think about if no one ever says anything until they are a really problem in school, it's so much harder to address these issues.  Much care and tact should be used in approaching the parents, but if you do it with a pure love and concern for the child, it could really help the child and their family.  I feel strongly that if we address speech/language, physical motor skills, emotional, behavioral, or cognitive developmental delays early, the better chance the child has to be successful in life.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I appreciate your comments!