Watching your child grow and learn new skills is one of the most rewarding aspects of parenthood. Taking first steps, transitioning to solid food, and initiating play, among others, are signals of healthy development. While every child grows and develops at a different rate, there might be times when you feel like your child is not where he/she should be. Take a look at these five questions to see if you should consider seeking treatment:

  1. Is my child struggling with day-to-day activities? Do they…
    • Make poor eye contact or have difficulty interacting with adults/peers?
    • Have difficulty following verbal directions or completing steps of daily routines?
    • Appear to be in constant motion, fidgety, or have a difficult time sitting still?
    • Exhibit disruptive behaviors-impulsive, limited attention, resistance to new activities/changes in routine, difficulty moving from one activity to another, or give up easily, and have difficulty calming themselves?
  1. Is my child struggling with eating behaviors? Do they…
    • Have trouble transitioning to textured foods?
    • Have a limited diet (does not eat certain food textures or temperatures, gags on food, etc.)?
    • Not attempt to feed themselves with a spoon/utensil?
    • Refuse to eat the same meals as the rest of the family?
    • Have trouble using utensils, a straw cup or a sippy cup?
  1. Does my child have trouble with play? Do they…
    • Act overly rough when playing?
    • Have difficulty imitating actions?
    • Seem clumsy or uncoordinated (taking longer than expected to learn motor skills, bumps into other people or objects in the environment, falls often, etc.)?
    • Avoid movement activities such as swings, slides, hesitates on curbs or uneven surfaces, etc.
  1. Does my child have sensory issues? Do they…
    • Avoid touching or being touched (especially if unexpected)?
    • Dislike getting dirty?
    • Seem unaware of pain, and/or display upset with daily routine tasks such as dressing, bathing, washing hair, cutting nails, etc.?
    • Cover their ears, become upset, or complain about loud noises?
  1. Does my child have issues with speech? Do they…
    • Stutter?
    • Communicate in a way that is difficult for you and others to understand?
    • Use a more limited vocabulary than their peers?
    • Struggle with reading and writing?

If you suspect your child needs therapy, talk to his/her pediatrician about the behaviors you are witnessing at home or call a therapy provider directly to set up an initial evaluation or screening. If it is determined that therapy can help, most therapy services are covered by insurance or Medicaid with a referral from a doctor. Once you receive the go-ahead from the doctor, you can visit a private physical therapist, occupational therapist or speech therapist to begin treatment.

About the Guest Blogger: Pediatric Advanced Therapy

Pediatric Advanced Therapy (PAT), has provided pediatric occupational, speech and physical therapy in our community since 1999. Our therapists guide and assist children to function optimally in their major roles (known as occupations) in life. A child’s primary occupation may include play, self-care, and school related activities. The skills necessary for successful, age appropriate functioning in these occupations include, but are not limited to: fine motor and gross motor coordination, sensory processing, visual perceptual and visual motor skills, attention (social, emotional), and daily living skills.

Our clinic offers novel equipment, creative treatment space, unique environmental set-ups, and a dynamic staff, all of which allow us to meet the individual needs of each child through Therapy. Our lobby has seated the broken hearted, the financially burdened and those eager for information to help their child. Our dynamic staff gives them hope and strategies for success. We are committed to helping each child reach his or her full potential through direct treatment, education and community outreach.

Learn more at:

  • Pediatric Advanced Therapy 704-799-6824
  • Mooresville:134 Infield Court Mooresville, NC 28117
  • Salisbury: 129 Woodson Street Salisbury, NC 28114
  • Charlotte (Coming May 2017): 2520 Whitehall Park Drive Suite 350 Charlotte, NC 28273