Tuesday, May 29th, 2012
Most kids with autism aren’t diagnosed until age 5, according to a survey from the National Institute of Mental Health. This means many are missing out on key Early Intervention therapies. The survey of 1420 kids with autism ages 6 to 17 found that more than half were diagnosed after age 5.
The result is in keeping with Easter Seals recent state-by-state report on Early Intervention (EI), the government program created to help kids under 3 with disabilities or developmental delays catch up with their peers. The findings: Infants and toddlers in every state continue to fall behind, and 13 percent of all kids who could use EI aren’t getting it.
My son, Max, started getting Early Intervention at one month old; he had a stroke at birth, and we knew he was at risk for many problems. The therapies he received made a tremendous difference in his abilities, physical and cognitive. Nine years later, I can still picture Max’s Early Intervention physical therapist down on the ground with him, hands on both his legs, coaxing him to take steps one at a time.
Easter Seals has an ongoing Make The First Five Count initiative, developed to help prevent kids with disabilities or at risk for developmental delays from falling through the cracks. They recently launched a free Developmental Milestones Screening parents can take, for kids ages 1 month to 5 years old; results to the questionnaire are delivered within two weeks, including suggested local resources if necessary.
There’s no harm in doing the screening, which only takes about 15 minutes to fill out. Actually, only good can come out of it: Getting a child the extra help he might need.
From my other blog:
Image of therapist massaging child’s foot via ShutterstockAdd a Comment
Tags: Detecting developmental delays, Developmental delays, Developmental delays free screening, Easter Seals Make The First Five Count, health | Categories: Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Children With Special Needs, Disability, Down Syndrome, Must Read, SPD, Special Needs, Special Needs Parenting, To The Max