Rehab at Your Place LLC has put together a list of common questions we receive regarding child development. If there are any additional questions remaining, call our office and we will be able to customize the feedback for you using the years of experience our professional staff has gained with hands on experience.
Questions About Fine Motor Skills:
“My child doesn’t work, what is occupational therapy?”
Pediatric occupational therapy helps a child in their activities (what occupies them) in their daily life. Like learning to: pick up and manipulate their toys appropriately, putting on or taking off their clothes (buttons, zippers, tying shoes), using their eyes and hands in a coordinated way. Occupational therapy addresses, motor planning, visual perception, sensory issues, muscle strength and coordination
“What is an occupational therapist?”
An occupational therapist is a graduate from an accredited occupational therapy program trained to help the individual reach their full potential in fine motor and sensory skills. A child with health impairment, poor muscle tone and/or poor coordination, decreased strength or range of motion or a delay in fine motor milestones may need occupational therapy. All our therapists are certified by the state of Tennessee take continuing education courses and complete the license renewal process yearly.
“My child doesn’t seem to play appropriately with his toys. He doesn’t seem to use his hands well? What shall I do?”
Every child develops fine motor skills at their own rate but there are some milestones you could look at to see if your child is moving forward in the area of fine motor development. (see milestones below) If you do not see progress each month, work with your child. If you still don’t see progress you might consider having a pediatric occupational therapist evaluate your child. Discuss this with your physician.
“My child has a limited number of foods he eats, he dislikes tags on his clothes, he reacts to loud noises, what does this mean?”
Some children are sensitive to sounds, touch, taste, movement and textures. If your child’s responses interferes with their comfort of doing activities, an occupational therapist can evaluate and work with your child to help decrease sensory issues.
Questions About Gross Motor Skills:
“What is physical therapy?”
Pediatric physical therapy helps a child learn gross motor skills like: running, jumping, hopping. It also assists a child learn functional mobility skills like walking, climbing, wheelchair mobility, transfers. A variety of treatment interventions are used including: balance and coordination activities, developmental activities, therapeutic exercise, adaptive play activities, and mobility training.
“What is a physical therapist?”
A physical therapist is a graduate from an accredited physical therapy program trained to help the individual reach their full potential in gross motor skills. A child with health impairment, poor muscle tone and or coordination, decreased strength or flexibility or a delay in motor milestones may need physical therapy. All our therapists are certified by the state of Tennessee take continuing education courses and complete the license renewal process yearly.
“My child doesn’t move as skillfully or as much as his first cousin, should I be concerned?”
Every child develops motor skills at their own rate but there are some milestones you could look at to see if your child is moving forward in the gross motor area. (see milestones below) If you do not see progress each month, work with your child. If you still don’t see progress you might consider having a pediatric physical therapist evaluate your child. Discuss this with your physician.
More child development information for Gross Motor Skills Milestones.
Questions About Speech:
“What is Speech-Language Pathology? What is a Speech-Language Pathologist?”
Speech-language pathology is the study of communication disorders. Communication disorders may include: speech and language delays, articulation disorders, apraxia, language processing disorders, stuttering and/or voice disorders.
A speech-language pathologist (SLP), also known as a speech therapist, works with individuals who experience difficulties with their speech, language, or voice. Pediatric speech-language pathologists specialize in working with children who have speech and language difficulties. There are also speech therapists that specialize in working with adults. Speech therapists assess, diagnose, and provide therapy to assist these individuals. Speech therapists must be licensed to practice by the state that they are working in, and the majority of speech therapists are also certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). ASHA is the professional organization that oversees speech-language pathologists within the United States.
“What are the credentials next to your name? What do they mean?”
Many speech therapists have the credentials “CCC-SLP” after their names. This means that the therapist has been awarded their Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech Language Pathology by ASHA.
“My son is 15 months old, and has not begun to speak yet. Should I be concerned? What signs should I look for before contacting a pediatric speech therapist?”
Children reach speech and language milestones sequentially (*see below). However, the age at which children reach these milestones can vary based on a number of factors. Accordingly, it isn’t necessarily alarming that your child isn’t speaking yet, but it’s important that you begin to work with him.
There are several warning signs that parents can look for to determine whether their child has a language problem.
- Child’s speech and language abilities have not really increased each month.
- Child uses only gestures to get attention and only has limited vocalization.
- Child does not respond to speech or sounds in the environment.
- If your child’s speech and language is not developing, and/or you haven’t noticed gestures being used, you should consider seeking a speech and language evaluation.
“What are typical speech, language, and hearing milestones I could look at for my child?”
- Birth to Age One: www.asha.org/public/speech/development/01.htm
- One to Two Years: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/12.htm
- Two to Three Years: www.asha.org/public/speech/development/23.htm
- Three to Four Years: www.asha.org/public/speech/development/34.htm
- Four to Five Years: www.asha.org/public/speech/development/45.htm
“We speak two languages in our home? How will this impact my child’s language?”
Here is a link to a useful article on the impact of a child growing up in a bilingual home: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/BilingualChildren.htm
“My child has problems eating, should I be concerned?”
Here is a link to a useful article on eating problems with children: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/swallowing/Feeding-and-Swallowing-Disorders-in-Children/
“What can I do to help improve my child’s speech & language?”
- Talk to your child as much as possible.
- Communicate with them all during daily routines such as dressing, feeding, bathing & playing. Describe what you or the child is doing. Ask questions.
- Sing songs, finger play, engage in traditional games like peek-a-boo, these will teach both language skills and appropriate social interactions (e.g., eye contact and turn-taking).
“My child is constantly having chronic ear infections. I never thought that they were a big deal, but recently another parent warned me that ear infections can be very problematic and should be taken seriously. Should I be concerned about my child’s recurring ear infections?”
When children have ear infections (Otitis Media) fluid can build up in their middle ear. When this occurs, it can affect how they hear sounds. The sounds that they hear may seem distorted. For instance, imagine what it would sound like to hear someone talking while your head was under water. In order to learn to speak properly, children need to be able to hear speech sounds accurately and clearly. If they experience frequent ear infections while their language is developing, they may be at risk for speech and language problems. Consult with your primary care physician.
If you have any child development questions, please contact Rehab At Your Place at (901) 761-0021 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org