It is best to get an assessment at the earliest age possible. Though parents may notice differences in toddlers, Developmental Dyspraxia (Developmental Co-ordination Disorder) is rarely diagnosed before the age of 5. Ideally, a multi-disciplinary team at your local Child Development Centre will do this.
Look at the symptom checklist to see if your child may have Dyspraxia. Contact your GP if you are concerned and get a referral to a Child Development Centre.
- Was your child born prematurely or was it a difficult birth?
- Did your child have difficulty feeding or talking?
- Did your child go from sitting to standing and miss out crawling?
- Do they find it difficult to draw or write?
- Is anyone else in the extended family clumsy?
- Does your child find small buttons and shoelaces difficult to do up?
- Is your child messy or very slow when eating?
- Do they bump into things and trip over thin air?
If you answered YES to 4 or more questions your child may have dyspraxia and need further assessment.
What to do:
Contact your GP for a referral to your local Child Development Centre (NHS). The multi-disciplinary team of therapists should liaise with your child’s school.
If there is no service available locally, contact us at Dyspraxia UK (details below) or go to: http://www.cotss-ip.org.uk for a local Paediatric Occupational Therapist.
Join the Dyspraxia Foundation www.dyspraxiafoundation.org.uk.
Go to www.boxofideas.org for lots of tips and ideas.
To help choose a supportive school see the advice at: www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk
For educational support, go to: http://www.smartcc.co.uk/smart-smartmoves.html - a motor developmental skills programme for children at home and school.