Global Development Delay
GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT DELAY (GDD) DESCRIBES A CONDITION WHICH OCCURS BETWEEN BIRTH AND 18 YEARS OLD. THE CHILD IS IDENTIFIED AS HAVING LOWER INTELLECTUAL FUNCTIONING THAN WHAT IS PERCEIVED AS NORMAL AND USUALLY HAS SIGNIFICANT DIFFICULTIES WITH COMMUNICATION AS WELL. OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY FOR CHILDREN CAN HELP TO MANAGE THE SYMPTOMS OF GDD AND HELP CHILDREN TO ACHIEVE THEIR POTENTIAL BOTH AT HOME AND IN SCHOOL.
The causes of GDD vary – the most common causes are genetic such as Down’s Syndrome or changes in the way the brain or spine has developed such as cerebral palsy. Being born too early or infections can also cause GDD.
Children with GDD often have trouble learning to sit without support tending not to crawl by 12 months or roll over by 6 months. They often have poor social skills and limited fine and gross motor skills. Some children with GDD can show aggressive behaviour which is often used as a coping mechanism. Children can be diagnosed at a very early age because of trouble feeding or poor muscle tone.
Whilst there is no treatment for GDD, strategies and adaptations can be done to support the child to live a happy and meaningful life Occupational therapy for children can also help them to achieve their potential both in school and at home.
How can Kate Meads Associates help?
The focus of the occupational therapy assessment will be to identify your child’s strengths and limitations. The occupational therapist will meet with you to discuss how your child has developed so far and what your goals are for the future e.g. for them to sit independently, wash and dress by themselves or to take part in certain school activities. The occupational therapist will take time getting to know your child, playing with them and watching them move and engage in activities with the aim of identifying the nature of their disabilities and the barriers they face.
KMA will produce a detailed yet accessible report within 10 working days of your assessment. This report will provide a summary of the barriers that get in the way of your child fulfilling their roles and routines and make a number of recommendations that might help.
Therapies and treatment
Our occupational therapists are highly trained and experienced and are passionate about providing evidence-based interventions to improve functional performance. Each treatment plan will be individual, underpinned by occupational therapy philosophy, taking a person-centred and strengths-based approach. Our ultimate aim is to help a person to achieve their goals and improve their functional performance. We pride ourselves on being experts when it comes to occupational therapy for children.
The occupational therapist will work with you and your child to develop their skills and cope with day to day demands. Treatment will focus on improving function and developing skills in daily activities such as taking part in school-based activities and becoming more independent at home. Occupational therapy for children will also encourage your child to use their strengths and develop their confidence and self-esteem.
Examples of common treatment aims include:-
Postural assessment and strategies
Motor / movement planning and sequencing
Strength and muscle tone improvement
Improving their ability to play sports e.g. throw and catch
Working with the school to develop strategies and appropriate adaptations
Support and training for school staff to promote understanding
Focused work on improving independence in daily tasks such as washing and dressing
Do you know someone who has difficulty…?
Meeting their motor milestones e.g. sitting unsupported or crawling?
Taking part in school activities?
Keeping up with their peers in school, sports or play?
Learning to wash and dress independently?