Parenting a child with a developmental delay comes with a mix of stress, anxiety, self doubt, and worry, but empowering parents with online screening and parenting tools, customized to their child's particular developmental delay, can help ease the way. Working parents also have tight schedules, and are seeking ways to maximize their time. From seeking and starting early intervention, to working with children through play, discover new strategies that support your employees and positively impact their kids lives as they go through the journey.
One of the most critical ways to help a parent of a child with developmental delay is through early identification and intervention. What can a parent do to jumpstart the process? If their employer offers an online developmental screening tool in their EAP or Benefits Package, that's a great place to start. If the parent is struggling to find the time to get to an appointment, or is not sure their concern is warranted - it's a private, at-home way to get answers and get the process going. During a child's visit to a pediatrician, doctors and nurses might use milestone checklists that screen for developmental delays. The problem is that these screenings don’t always happen, or they are very basic and don’t necessarily pick up on issues. Also, the wait time to see a specialist for a more in-depth screening can be up to a year.
The good news is that there are new, clinically-validated online screening tools available that can increase parents’ knowledge about milestones, screen children from the privacy of home, and help direct them to the right resources quickly. This reduces the wait-and-see approach that delays diagnosis. It also reduces the number of appointments attended by getting parents to the right resources, which saves wear and tear, travel time, and out-of-office time for working parents. Going to a well-visit armed with the results of a screening can help parents feel confident about expressing their concerns as well. Dr. Sharief Taraman, Vice President of Medical at Cognoa notes, "as a pediatric specialist, I understand how important it is for parents to be empowered, and to be able to advocate for their children. Tools like Cognoa help make that happen."
Online tools and apps can also help working parents organize their at-home supports. It has been proven that parent involvement in the therapy process improves outcomes. But what is that involvement? How can parents easily access and keep track of activities that support their child's development? Can therapeutic activities and play overlap to make the best use of time? Kelley Abrahms, a Ph.D. Developmental Psychologist who works with Cognoa says, "Play is more than just fun and games. Play supports and enhances all areas of development. Play is how babies and children develop motor and thinking skills, creativity, self-control, and how to communicate and get along with others."
Cognoa's platform provides customized activities tailored specifically to the child, which interweaves therapy and play, making the best use of time.
While parenting a child with developmental delays can be demanding, keeping your company open to the innovative resources available can help alleviate the questions and frustrations that come with the territory and give working parents the ability to efficiently focus on their child's needs.