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5 Signs Your Child May Need Speech or Occupational Therapy

By |2024-07-08T12:14:47-04:00July 8th, 2024|Categories: Health A-Z, Physical Therapy|Tags: , , |

While every child is different, some may need additional help to meet developmental milestones. CentraState speech-language pathologist Danielle DaCunha, MS, CCC-SLP, and occupational therapist Diana Cruz, MS, OTR/L, CSRS, share five signs that your child may benefit from a speech or occupational therapy evaluation.

  1. They have trouble meeting developmental milestones, such as saying their first words, walking, sitting up without support, eating solid foods or regulating emotions. For school-aged children, this includes getting dressed, feeding themselves, going to the bathroom, brushing their teeth, playing and completing school-based tasks.
  2. They struggle with communication milestones, such as communicating through pointing or gesturing by six months or babbling or speaking by about 18 months. With communication issues, you may notice your child frequently becoming frustrated or having trouble controlling their emotions.
  3. They become overwhelmed in social situations that can overstimulate the senses, such as loud or crowded places. In this case, a child may prefer to play alone or avoid interactions with other kids or adults.
  4. They can’t maintain attention in situations where other children can, such as following directions at soccer practice.
  5. They show behavioral patterns like avoiding eye contact, not turning toward their name or having trouble deviating from their set routine. These behaviors may warrant follow-up with a developmental pediatrician.

In addition to pediatric speech-language therapy and occupational therapy, CentraState offers pediatric physical therapy, aquatic therapy and scoliosis screenings and treatment. These outpatient pediatric rehabilitation services are customized to support the individual developmental needs of infants, children and adolescents. Team members work together in an integrated approach, so patients can see multiple disciplines under one roof – making it even more convenient for parents to access the care their children need.

If you think your child could benefit from a speech, occupational therapy or other pediatric rehab consultation, talk to their physician about a referral.


Learn more about the Pediatric Rehabilitation services at CentraState.

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