HOW TO BEST HELP YOUR CHILD
You might have a funny feeling about your child’s development. Something just doesn’t seem right. Maybe all the other toddlers at Emma’s daycare are speaking in sentences and Emma is completely non-verbal. Liam might have unusually terrible tantrums about almost anything that scare away just about everyone. And occasionally, a concerned family member raises the alarm that Noah should really be making better eye contact, following more directions, playing differently, or all of the above.
Nothing is more important to you than your kids. Worrying that something isn’t right can keep you awake at night, as your mind and Google lead you to all kinds of terrible places. However, the good news is that if you have concerns, there really is no need to panic. You have many resources available to you to help you be the best parent possible.
Your best first step is always to reach out to your child’s pediatrician. Schedule an appointment with your child to share your concerns. When you are at the appointment, the doctor will examine your child just as at every routine appointment. The doctor will ask you many questions. You may also be invited to complete some standardized assessment forms. It is important that you share your concerns with the doctor, even if they seem somewhat silly or embarrassing. Since there can be many conditions with similar symptoms, every detail makes a difference in helping the doctor pinpoint what might be wrong.
In a best-case scenario, the pediatrician will reassure you that there is no cause for concern because your child’s development is typical. You may be encouraged to monitor your child’s progress and return within 3-6 months if there hasn’t been any improvement.
Sometimes, a medical condition may explain the concerns that you noticed and mentioned. In that case, your doctor will advise you what tests or procedures may need to be done to rule out those conditions. And sometimes the developmental concerns indicate that your child may have a developmental delay or disorder.
Pediatricians are qualified to give developmental diagnoses, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder. Occasionally, your pediatrician can give your child a diagnosis and recommend treatment. However, many will prefer to refer you to a specialist so that you can receive the best care possible. The specialist will perform a comprehensive evaluation to be sure that your child receives the most accurate diagnosis.
Professionals who are qualified to conduct comprehensive developmental evaluations include
- pediatric neurologists
- pediatric psychiatrists
- neurodevelopmental pediatricians
- child psychologists.
Each of these professionals use slightly different assessment processes and tools to achieve a similar outcome. Their goal is to give you an accurate diagnosis with a clear and comprehensive treatment plan (what you can do to help your child manage and overcome the challenges associated with their developmental condition).
If your child is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, there is no need to panic! ABA Therapy is the gold-standard treatment for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder, because it is a highly-researched and effective therapy method that will teach you and your child how to maximize their strengths and overcome their deficits.
At Interact Therapy Services, we offer in-home ABA therapy services to children and their families. Our caring and committed professionals will work together with you to teach your child the skills that they need to progress and succeed.
To find out more about Interact Therapy Services, call 732.806.0804 for a free no-obligation phone consultation. We look forward to helping you and your child!