By Beth Arky
Trust is a two-way street. How can you build trust and create rapport with the clinicians treating your child with learning and attention issues? Try these tips from parents who shared their ideas with the National Center for Learning Disabilities.
“We have an exceptional relationship with our OT and a solid one with our developmental pediatrician,” Dana W. writes. “They value our kiddo in ways the regular world doesn’t. [The OT] had one 90-minute session with him and she spoke our language. In so many other situations, I feel like I’m my child’s translator. [The doctor] has ‘Great minds don’t all think alike’ on his business cards. Our child never feels broken or different to them. They make him laugh and work hard.”
“I vented about the initial pediatrician (who was very judgmental and rigid) and let the new pediatrician know what I needed from her so that my anxiety would be lower,” writes Dede W.
“Interview doctors before establishing a relationship,” Sonya S. writes. “Keep the pediatrician in the loop with all the other specialists. Visits are inherently rushed, but [keep] the conversation … focused and effective.”
“I love my children’s pediatrician,” Julie C. writes. “She trusts what mom says and will give great referrals. She and I have both learned over the years that she can help best by referring out to a specialist!”
“I’ve found that many doctors in the same area can be very opinionated [about] one another and have different methods and ideas [about] treatment,” Jenny K. writes. “You really need to shop around and find someone you and your child can trust.”
“While stimulants can be helpful for focus, the side effects … can make the benefit not worth it,” Marilyn L. writes. “Luckily, there are different options. Find a doctor who can work with you to find a combination of behavioral, therapeutic, nutritional and pharmacologic interventions.” Kristin T adds, “It’s important to create a team that listens and works together. We connect with each provider and make sure [they all connect] in a collaborative space.”
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is an approach to teaching aimed at meeting the needs of every student in a classroom. It can be helpful for all kids, including kids with learning and attention issues. But UDL takes careful planning by teachers. Here are just a few examples of how UDL can work in a classroom.
Knowing how to talk to your grade-schooler about ADHD medication can be tricky. But there are certain things she needs to know about the medication she’s taking to help with her ADHD symptoms. Here are some important topics to raise, and ways to help her understand.
Understood is not affiliated with any pharmaceutical company.
Sheldon H. Horowitz, Ed.D., is senior director of learning resources and research at the National Center for Learning Disabilities.
Checklist: Questions to Ask Your Child’s Doctors and Specialists
Types of Doctors Who Help Kids With Learning and Attention Issues
7 Steps for a Successful First Meeting With Your Child’s Specialist
Speech-Language Pathologists: What You Need to Know
Specialists Who Work With Kids With Learning and Attention Issues
Pediatric Neuropsychologists: What You Need to Know
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