When doctors talk about learning and attention issues they may use terms you’ve never heard. This printable mini-glossary can help you follow the discussion when you meet to talk about your concerns and next steps.
Assessment is the collection of information to find out what is causing a child’s issues. It may involve tests, interviews and observations. These are done by doctors, specialists and educators.
ADHD stands for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. It’s a biological condition that can cause attention issues, impulsivity and hyperactivity. It often occurs with learning issues.
Audiologist is a health-care professional who tests for hearing and balance issues. An audiologist can rule out a medical reason for a child’s language and listening comprehension issues.
Developmental delay is when a child doesn’t reach a milestone by the age expected. This can involve language, thinking and social skills. Delays can cause learning or attention issues.
Evaluation involves testing to see if a child has a learning or attention issue and needs special education services at school. Results are usually discussed with a team of professionals.
Language-based learning disability (LBLD) affects a child’s ability to use language and can impact reading, writing and/or spelling. The most common kind is dyslexia.
Learning disability (LD) is a condition that affects how the brain works with information. It can impact the ability to receive, process, store, respond and communicate.
Occupational therapy (OT) is a form of treatment that can help improve the skills needed for everyday tasks like writing. These include hand-eye coordination, strength and fine motor skills.
Physical therapy (PT) is a form of treatment that can help improve the gross motor skills needed for walking, reaching and standing. It also helps with balance and muscle control.
Reading disability is another name for dyslexia, the most common type of learning disability.
School counselors are trained to help children with learning and attention issues. They can provide counseling for emotional support and help kids with school transitions.
Speech-language pathologist (SLP) assesses and treats issues with speech, language and swallowing. An SLP can also help kids build conversation and social skills.
Therapy is a general term referring to treatment. It helps a child (or adult) improve skills and work around weaknesses. Therapy doesn’t include medication.
Understanding terminology can make it easier to talk with your child’s doctor. Prepare even more for your next visit by reviewing a list of questions to ask.