Monday, June 30th, 2014
What are the parenting principles for raising happy, well-adjusted children? Here the focus is on the importance of intervention.
Many parents of babies and toddlers grew up in an era of “wait and see” – the idea being to not focus too much on developmental milestones and wait until there was a strong signal that a baby or toddler may have a developmental issue. That has changed.
It’s still a reality that babies and toddlers develop at different rates. There is much more of a normal range for developmental milestones than there is hard and fast age markers. That said, there are benchmark milestones and ages that are useful checkpoints for potential evaluation and intervention.
What has changed? Two things. First, developmentalists have a much more sophisticated understanding of developmental milestones and early signs of potential problems, including early symptoms of autism, language delay, and motor delay. Second, early interventions are much more powerful and can be administered at younger ages. They can make a huge difference in a young child’s life.
Pediatricians are trained to screen at key ages for fundamental milestones. If your pediatrician suggests a developmental evaluation, it doesn’t mean that intervention will be necessary. It may be that the conclusion is to “wait and see.” But given the sophistication of modern evaluation and the success of early intervention, it’s very much worth letting professionals make that call.
More in This Series
- Parenting Principle #1: Be Positive
- Parenting Principle #2: Talk, Talk, Talk
- Parenting Principle #3: Read, Read, Read
- Parenting Principle #4: Reduce Electronic Noise
- Parenting Principle #5: Cultivate Exploration
- Parenting Principle #6: Focusing on Others