What is a developmental assessment?
Developmental assessment is basically a process of assessing whether a child is growing and doing things appropriately for his age.
Who are the children who need development assessment and why do they need so?
Few children require developmental assessment. All the children who are born pre-maturely, usually earlier than 35 weeks or those children who weigh less than 2.5 kilos at birth will require developmental assessment. Children, who require the assessment, have to be admitted in intensive care. For e.g. meconium aspiration syndrome or any chromosomal abnormalities which was diagnosed antenataly or if they had birth asphyxia at the time of birth, will require developmental assessment. Children who have had major surgery like cardiac or abdominal ones, need to be assessed.
The whole purpose of assessing is to see whether they are progressing appropriately or not, if there is a delay, we should start intervention as soon as possible and keep checking their progress to see if they are doing everything as expected.
Who are the doctors who will do the developmental assessment?
Doctors who are trained to use certain developmental kits are the ones who do it.
For e.g. Bayley screener and bayley scale of infant development which is well known throughout the world as a screener and a developmental assessment kit, but there are other people who will use different types of screening tools to assess the development.
What sort of training is required for bayley scales?
To use bayley scales, you need to pass certain courses.
How frequently do you need to do these assessments?
Ideally it is a seven stage clinic.
After birth children need to be seen at
• 6 weeks
• 3 months
• 6 months
• 9 months
• 12 months
• 18 months
• 24 months
So there are seven types of children that need to be assessed which is why I call it a seven stage clinic.
At all times, we will be using a bayley screener to see if there are any abnormalities and if so, the child will undergo a full developmental assessment.
How do I know if my child needs developmental assessment?
Usually it so happens that you might notice that your child is not performing at the same level as his peers. Someone might point out the same.
Your other option is to go to Ovumparents.com. There is a checklist which clearly tells what your child is supposed to do at a particular age. You can go through the checklist and see, whether your child is performing at those requirements.
Whenever you meet your local pediatrician or doctor for vaccines, you can ask them your doubts and see if your child is delayed or not.
What do you do if you see any developmental delay?
It depends on what delay you are seeing in the child.
Usually it is branched into three things
• Cognitive delay,
• Speech and language delay
• Motor delay
Depending on which appropriate actions will be taken. If it is a motor delay, a physiotherapist needs to be involved.
If it is a speech and language delay then a speech and language therapist needs to be involved.
If it is cognitive delay then a pediatrician and a psychologist needs to be involved.
We have a multidisciplinary team and based on the type of delay, appropriate reference is taken.
Team Ovum Hospitals