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When you have a child, you hope that he or she is going to develop at a typical pace. You want your kid to achieve all of his or her milestones when he or she is supposed to. Unfortunately, not every child is the same. Your child may be exhibiting some signs of developmental delays or learning disabilities that are concerning to you. You may be scared and perhaps even think that ignoring it will make it go away, but knowing the signs of these developmental delays can help you get your child get the early intervention they need that will make a big difference in his or her development.
It is perfectly normal for children to develop at different rates. One child may walk and say his or her first words six months before another child. However, the child achieving these milestones later doesn’t necessarily have any kind of disability. So, with all this uncertainty, what do you look for when trying to spot an issue? Some potential signs of learning disabilities or developmental delays include a child who is exhibiting delays in:
- social interaction,
- physical developments,
- significant behavior problems including aggression,
- hearing, and
- emotional skills.
In older children, a child may be struggling to stay focused in school, and his or her grades may suffer.
Causes of Developmental Delays
There are many different reasons why a child might be exhibiting delays of some sort. There are conditions like Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADD, and ADHD that can make it very difficult for a child to learn and grow at a normal rate in some or all aspects of life. There may also be genetic abnormalities that may leave a child predisposed to developing delays. For instance, a birth injury can cause delays at a later point in your child’s life. Sometimes there will be delays with no real explanation for why they are occurring. This can be extremely frustrating to parents.
Understanding Your Child
It’s important that you try and understand what your child is going through in order to help him or her properly. Delays and learning disabilities don't affect your child's intelligence, but it may be difficult to see past behavioral or emotional problems to recognize how intelligent they are. Your child needs your patience and help in order to get through this time in life. There are plenty of different services available in your area that can help your child. If your child is in school, a teacher and school social worker are a great place to start.
Don’t get too discouraged if you think your child has developmental delays or learning disabilities. There have been many different creative assistants over the past few years that can make a huge difference in how your child is developing. You should contact your child’s pediatrician to get the ball rolling.
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