Your child’s growth is much more than simply physical. Starting at birth, children learn throughout their lifetimes. As your child develops, they’re supposed to achieve developmental milestones, such as smiling and waving “bye-bye” for the first time. Developmental delays are when your child fails to reach a developmental milestone at the same time as other children the same age. However, developmental screening is designed to help identify developmental delays and administer solutions.
What Is Developmental Screening?
Developmental screening can be used to determine if your child is learning the basic skills they should. The goal is to see how the child moves, behaves, speaks, learns, and plays. If the developmental screening suggests there might be a problem, your provider will discuss your child’s development with you and make any appropriate referrals, if necessary.
How Often Should Developmental Screening Be Conducted?
The American Academy of Pediatrics suggest all kids have developmental screening to detect early delays and disabilities. Some basic questions will be asked at every Well Child Check, but more intense screening will occur at:
- Nine months
- 18 months
- Two years or 30 months
If the child is at high risk for developmental problems caused by low birthweight, preterm birth, or other factors, extra screening may be needed.
Why Is Developmental Screening Important?
A large number of children with developmental delays are not identified as early as possible. When a developmental delay is not recognized early, your child may have to wait to get the help they need. These delays could make it very difficult for your child to learn when they actually start school.
In the United States, 17% of children suffer from some degree of developmental or behavioral disabilities, including delays in speech or other areas. Unfortunately, less than 50% of these children with developmental problems are actually identified before they start school. Our goal is to make sure any developmental issues are identified early so that any problems can be addressed as soon as possible.
How Can I Help My Child’s Development?
Rest, proper nutrition, and exercise are vital for your child’s health and development. It’s important to spend time playing, reading, singing, and simply talking to your child. All of these activities are extremely important to your child’s development. However, it’s also imperative to have developmental screening at Stepping Stone Pediatrics. Developmental screening will help detect abnormalities earlier and help you work toward a solution.