FREE developmental screeningsfor children ages birth through four are offered in all the counties of Tri-County Kids. It's a chance to celebrate your child's development and help with early detection of potential developmental delays.
Many children with developmental disabilities are not identified before age 10 (source), by which time significant delays already might have occurred and opportunities for treatment missed.
Screenings offer proactive parents a chance to support their children's development.
But as much as parents want to support our children's development, there can be some hesitation to take children in for a screening, mostly for 2 main reasons:
The belief that there's no need for a screening when everything appears to be fine
The reluctance to hear about any potential delays
I get it. I was one of those moms who was told that "something is different" about my child when he was only six months old.
My intuition had been telling me for a while that something was different with his muscles, the way he held himself, but I was also a first time mom. What did I know? Surely, it was all in my head. Surely, he was just fine...right?
When someone else put to words all I was secretly thinking, - a million different thoughts burst through me at once, and I knew deep in my bones that my son needed help that neither I nor my husband could not give him on our own.
This started a journey for my family to find out exactly what was going on and what to do to help our son.
He went through all the developmental screenings - physical, social, vision, etc, and I met each one with a mixture of hope and fear - the knowing and the unknown was almost too much to bear.
But the screenings brought us so many resources and positivity to our journey.
We found out exactly where he was at in his development, and made a plan of where he could be.
This wasn’t some grand scheme to get him exactly on the same pace as other kiddo’s his age – it was taking his development, his personality and who he was into consideration, and making the best plan for him.
And the screenings ultimately led us to our amazing therapists. By the time our first session was completed, I felt positive, upbeat, and excited to know I had a team of resources behind us to help our son.
Because of the early intervention, our son is thriving now, and we are grateful for the therapists in the Tri-County area. Everyone has been incredibly kind, supportive, encouraging, and made the whole process as seamless as possible.
My son loved having a 1 on 1 playmate (his therapist) visit him at home, and we loved being taught all the things we needed to do to continue his progress.
I welcome the developmental screenings now, embracing each opportunity to learn better ways I can support my children, and ultimately get them ready for "big-kid school" one day.
I know about the awesome resources out there - often free or very low-cost - and that whatever challenge we come across, won't be met alone.
And what about for those of us that have no concerns or worries about developmental delays?
Even if your child seems to be right on track developmentally, a screening can:
Provide ways to continue to encourage healthy child development
Know what milestones to look for in the near future
Discover things you might not realize your child is capable of doing
Learn new things to do with your child to continue to build their skills
Understand early detection signs (including ones you might not even be aware of) to continue to watch for
Receiveparenting information and community resources
All children grow and develop differently, and the screenings give us all a chance to meet them where they are and help them thrive!
May 5: The Family Resource Center of Sheboygan County is offering Free Developmental Screeningsfor children birth through four. Call today for advanced registration.
May 16: Investing Early Developmental Screening by Healthiest Manitowoc County Investing Early Coalition is offering Free Developmental Screenings for children 2 months - four. Hosted by Kiel Public Library. Walk-in's welcome!