October is a month of awareness and advocacy for a variety of developmental disabilities, including ADHD, Down Syndrome, Dyslexia, and Sensory Processing Disorder. Let’s take a look at each one of these developmental diagnoses and how families can support children who are diagnosed with each of these can be not only well informed but provided the best support for their children!
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
- ADHD is one of the most common mental health conditions affecting children. ADHD is something that is often misunderstood and can cause a child to feel isolated in social settings. Roughly two-thirds of children with ADHD have at least one comorbid condition, and Autism is among those that commonly occur with ADHD. According to the National Library of Medicine, research suggests that nearly half of Autistic children also have ADHD.
- ADHD is diagnosed by clinical evaluation, family history, and screening of symptoms. If your child is being referred to get an ADHD assessment, it could be a benefit to enroll in parent training programs. Parent training programs can help develop age-appropriate expectations for your child and can teach specific management skills for certain problem behaviors. At our Autism center, any child who is receiving services for therapy will also have parent/caregiver training sessions.
- Down syndrome services early in life will often help children with Down Syndrome to improve their physical and intellectual abilities. Most of these services focus on helping children with Down syndrome develop to their full potential.
- Services include speech, occupational, and physical therapy, and they are typically offered through early intervention programs in each state. Children with Down syndrome may also need extra help or attention in school, although many children are included in regular classes. There are some resources available that provide up to date research to create a better understanding of learning styles, educate the public, address social challenges, and create community to help guide all persons to reach their full potential!
- Down Syndrome Resource Foundation (DSRF) https://www.dsrf.org/
- National Association for Down Syndrome https://www.nads.org/
- Dyslexia is another neurodevelopmental disorder, usually caught as a result of a reading challenge for school aged children. It is predominately a breakdown of the processing system in the brain that helps us read and take in information. We want to support children early on when this diagnosis is suspected. In most cases diagnostics are done by a licensed educational psychologist. Reading tests and other assessments will help take a deeper look at your child’s processing system.
Sensory Processing Disorder:
- This condition exists when signals in the environment are not able to be processed and do not get an appropriate response as a result. A child with SPD may find it difficult to process information through the senses of sight, touch, smell, hearing, and taste. Many people on the Autism Spectrum have sensory processing disorder, research shows that 90% of children with ASD have sensory difficulties. This can make for challenges in doing everyday tasks and can have a negative effect on daily life if not monitored and managed properly. There are many varieties of sensory activities and strategies that can be implemented to help support a child with sensory difficulties. These can include but are not limited to, a variety of types of therapies to introduce new things to and develop the sensory system, creating a schedule of activities that encourage your child to involve each of their sensory systems throughout the day with activities, and finding coping strategies and regulation techniques that work for you and your child. Often as parents and caregivers, you are your child’s biggest advocate and can advocate for your child’s sensory needs to others! For more sensory activities, creative ideas, and other helpful tips and information on all things sensory and developmental disabilities follow along on our Pinterest!
Providing reliable information, staying up to date on the latest research accurate evaluations, support, and showing kindness in understanding can help encourage those affected by these conditions and their families to not only find the appropriate treatment but to find and share resources! To schedule an evaluation or assessment for ADHD, Autism, or any other developmental disorders for your child – check out our website & contact us today to schedule with our diagnostics and behavioral team!
Little Spurs Autism Centers offers collaborative and compassionate ABA Therapy to children 0-21 years old. Offering both center-based and home-based care, LSAC is excited to empower families by providing them with the support they need. For more information, please email us at email@example.com