Does Your Child
Avoid Eye Contact?
Eye contact is a critical social skill. For many children, it can be challenging. A child who is unable to make eye contact or communicate wants and needs may have a language impairment or developmental delay. The inability to make eye contact may be a sign of autism. If you are concerned, speak to your doctor or call our office.
Does Your Child
Struggle Making Friends?
It can be so hard as a parent when your child struggles to make friends. But having a hard time making friends may have nothing to do with your child’s personality. Rather it can be because of attention issues, like ADHD, or a learning disability, including executive functioning issues, nonverbal learning disabilities, auditory processing disorders or a language impairment.
Does Your Child
Need Speech Or Language Therapy?
Communication is so important. If you are a parent who is concerned about your child’s ability to speak and understand, you should talk to your doctor or call our office. Red flags include children not using a variety of sounds or words, not understanding or following instructions and not playing with toys or their peers like other children their age.
Does Your Child
Need Help Communicating Better At Home?
There are many ways to help your child communicate better through everyday activities, including spending time with the child, reading with them, being at his or her eye level, following the child’s lead, speaking grammatically correct with the child, doing what interests them and asking questions about it. Give them time to answer and to verbally communicate with you. Set up situations where they have to request or comment to get what they desire.
Is Your Child
A Picky Eater?
Like adults, children have different preferences when it comes to food. Temperatures, colors, and textures may influence whether a child will try and/or like a new food. Some children are “picky” eaters, and prefer certain types or textures of food or may refuse many others. However, a child’s refusal to eat certain foods can be more than “picky” if it is interfering with their growth or development. If your child chokes or gags when eating or seems extra “picky” they may have a feeding or sensory impairment. An SLP or an OT can help you determine if your child is going through a typical phase or if therapy is needed.
Know The Difference
Temper Tantrum Or Disorder?
As children grow and develop, they face opportunities to learn and to respond appropriately and to identify their feelings and emotions. When encountering new and/or stressful scenarios, children may “misbehave” on occasion during this process. Children may talk back, act out, or refuse to follow directions. However, when these behaviors begin repeatedly interfering with the home environment, social activities and school, it may be an indication that something other than emotional growing pains is happening. Your child may need to have an evaluation to determine what is happening. Many times they may have a speech, language or sensory delay. We can help.
I Think My Child Is
Tongue-Tied – What Do I Do?
Tongue-Tie (ankyloglossia) occurs when the band of skin connecting the tongue to the floor of the mouth is shorter, thicker, and/or tighter than usual. The condition is present at birth and limits the tongue’s range of motion. Tongue-tie may make it difficult for the child to lift the tip of the tongue to the upper teeth, stick out the tongue past the lower teeth, and move the tongue from side to side. Some instances may cause no problems at all, but tongue-tie may affect a child’s feeding, swallowing, and speech production. Tongue-tie is more likely to occur with boys and may also run in families. We can help determine if your child needs their tongue clipped. We can also help with therapy for feeding, swallowing, and speech, if needed.
Could My Child
Autism is a developmental disorder. It impairs an individual’s ability to interact socially, communicate clearly and effectively, and behave appropriately. Autism affects individuals of all backgrounds and races. It affects boys three to four times more often than girls. Autism can run in families, indicating a possible genetic link to the disorder. However, there is no cause of autism. Symptoms are often noticeable before the age of three. Symptoms may include: difficulty making eye contact, difficulty making friends or seeking out others to play with, difficulty taking turns, delay or lack of language skills, using repetitive motor movements, and seeming preoccupied, especially with parts and objects more than people. A child neurologist and/or psychologist can evaluate and diagnose autism. It is best to begin treatment of symptoms of autism as early as possible. A speech-language pathologist, occupational therapist, and physical therapist can be part of the evaluation team. These individuals, along with parents/caregivers can work together to help and implement intervention plans. Goals and objectives for interventions are to improve social interaction, communication, and/or behavior for better daily activities at school, home and in the community.
If you suspect your child has autism, follow these tips when going through the process of getting a diagnosis: trust yourself, talk to professionals, write everything down, ask a lot of questions and start early. Remember to enjoy every day with your child. Every child is unique and has special gifts. Know that you are not alone and take advantage of resources. We can help you.
Does My Child
Sometimes, people use the term “ADHD” to label kids they see exhibiting “bad” behaviors or high energy levels. There is often some confusion about this disorder: who has it, how it can impact life, and where it comes from as well as treatment. Diagnosis requires an evaluation by a licensed pediatrician, psychologist, or psychiatrist. There is no single test to detect ADHD. Professionals will conduct interviews and collect information for behaviors and symptoms along with asking parents questions. To be considered for a diagnosis of ADHD, behaviors must: (1) display before age 12, (2) be more severe than in typical kids the same age, (3) last for more than 6 months and (4) negatively affect two or more areas of the child’s life. Treatment for ADHD is simple and can include a combination of medication, therapy and educational support.
Does My Child
Need An IEP?
An Individualized Education Program (IEP) is a special education term that outlines a set of goals for your child. In order to receive special services at school, a student must: (1) have a formal evaluation by a special education team (2) must have a disability that adversely affects the student’s educational performance (3) must require specially-designed instruction in order to gain access to the general curriculum and (4) must meet at least one of the 13 different categories.
The 13 categories under which a student can qualify for special education services are: autism, deaf-blind, deafness, emotional disturbance, hearing impaired, intellectual disability, multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairment, other health impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, traumatic brain injury, or visual impairment including blindness.
Has Autism, Now What?
Raising children with autism can be very demanding on the entire family. Children with autism often require special attention and specific routines that may be difficult for siblings to understand. Parents often struggle with finding enough hours in the day to devote to other children in the family. Siblings may feel forgotten or left out and struggle with finding their place in the family. Siblings may encounter: embarrassment regarding their sibling, frustrations, aggressive behaviors, jealousy, concern for their parents’ stress and grief and concern over the future of their sibling and family. There are ways to help: Explain autism, form bonds with every child, have some “me” time and get support when needed.
Receives School Therapy But Is Still Behind
To qualify for therapy at school, a child must be below the 7th percentile in two areas and the impairment/delay must be adversely affecting their school performance. This means if a child is receiving school therapy services they are moderately to severely delayed. Most students who receive school therapy services will not catch up from school services alone. School services are most typically done one time weekly in a group of 3-5 students. If your child has a moderate to severe impairment they may require additional private therapy in a one-on-one setting in order to reach their therapy goals.
Speech And Language Therapy. Is There A Difference?
Yes, there is a huge difference between the two. Speech refers to the sounds that come out of our mouths to make words. The speech process is extremely complicated. The process of developing speech occurs naturally. However, if there is a glitch or disruption in the process, it will affect one’s language skills. Language is what we speak, write, read, and understand in order to communicate with others. Language is also communicating through gestures (body language or sign language). There are two areas of language: receptive (what we hear and understand from others) and expressive (the words we use to create messages others will understand).