Children grow and develop differently, doing activities at their own pace. However, they generally reach certain development milestones in their life at roughly the same time. We have tried to describe in easy steps various development milestones and reasons for delay if any to allay your anxiety.
If your child does not roll over when he or she should, or is not keeping first step on time, it could be a sign of developmental delay. Let’s know some facts related to developmental delay and its treatment.
EARLY DIAGNOSIS IS THE KEY TO BEST TREATMENT.
Know the facts below and monitor your child’s growth for the right development.
(most of the children can do)
(only few children can do)
Responds to sound
Stares at faces
Oohs and aahs
|Tries to hold head.
|Cooing and gurgling sounds.
Tries to hold head.
|Holds head steady.
May lift head and shoulder (mini pushup)
Recognises mother’s face.
Holds head steady.
Recognises mother’s voice.
|Turns towards loud sounds.
Can roll over.
|Can bear weight on legs.
Holds head steadily.
Coos in response to talking.
Can grasp a toy.
|Can distinguish bright colours.
Can start rolling.
Turns towards sounds.
Plays with hands and feet.
|Can sit for some time without support.
Stranger anxiety may begin.
|Turns towards sounds and voices.
Rolls in both directions.
Sits without support.
Ready for solids.
|May start crawling.
May drag objects towards himself.
TYPES OF DEVELOPMENTAL DELAYS
TYPES OF DEVELOPMENTAL DELAYS INCLUDE-
- Language or speech
- Thinking or cognitive skills.
- Social skills.
- Motor skills (movement)
If the delay is in many or all these areas, it is called global developmental delay.
REASONS- The reasons for developmental delay are many some common conditions include
- Genetic defect. eg Downs syndrome.
- Premature birth.
- Consumption of alcohol during pregnancy.
- Child abuse or neglect.
COGNITIVE DELAYS- Cognitive delay causes learning difficulties and affects the child’s intellectual functioning.
It is usually found in children who have experienced brain injury, meningitis or seizure disorders.
COGNITIVE DELAYS CAN ALSO BE DUE TO DOWN’S SYNDROME.
MOTOR DELAYS- In motor delay co-ordination of large muscle groups is affected.eg muscles of arms and legs. Also, there is difficulty in crawling and rolling over of infants.
Other conditions causing motor delays are –
- Cerebral palsy
SOCIAL DELAYS- Children with neurobehavioral disorders eg Autism , often have social and behavioural delays.
In social delays, there is difference in reaction of child to the environment compared to children of his/her age.
SPEECH DELAYS- Speech delays are language disorders. Children also face trouble in identifying shapes and colours. They have low vocabulary of words and can be slow to create sentences.
- Genetic syndromes.
- Brain damage
- Hearing loss
GLOBAL DEVELOPMENTAL DELAY –If delay is in all the above skills,it is known as Global developmental delay.Child is diagnosed with lower intellectual functioning.
- Downs syndrome.
- Fragile X syndrome.
- Abnormalities with development of brain or spinal cord.eg cerebral palsy or spina bifida.
AUTISM- Autism is a general term which mentions complex disorders of brain development. It is characterised by
- Difficulties in interaction.
- Difficulty in verbal and non verbal communication.
CEREBRAL PALSY – One of the common causes of Developmental delay. Doctors look for clinical signs like stiff or loose limbs and any signs of brain injury.
The evaluation of Developmental delays is a team approach which usually includes Paediatrician, Surgeon, Behavioural therapist, Physiotherapist, Speech therapist and a Psychologist.
WHAT IS THE RIGHT TIME OF EARLY INTERVENTION?
Early intervention should start shortly after birth.
Development is a continuous process which should be assessed as per weeks and months.
Physiotherapy helps in gaining motor development of child eg sitting, gaining head control, achieving muscle strength etc.
In Conditions like Down’s syndrome, Autism, Brain injury etc Physiotherapy sessions if taken continuously will prevent children from using trick movements which if not treated in long term could lead to functional problems but the path of progress is long and tough.
WITH THE HELP OF NEW TECHNIQUES,TEAM APPROACH OF PHYSIOTHERAPIST, SPEECH THERAPIST, PAEDIATRITIAN AND OTHER SKILLED MEMBERS OF TEAM,THE PATH OF PROGRESS IS VERY GOOD AND PROMISING.
In our next article we will highlight the various available physiotherapy approaches for treatment of developmental delays.
You can ask your questions and queries and give your valuable suggestions in our forum.
Just go to website www.physioheals.in
Click on- login
Click on-“ask your question” in forum.
Let us gain knowledge together.
Reviewed by medical team (PHYSIOHEALS)