Every child is unique and the developmental process may differ from child to child. According to our paediatrician, as long as the development is within the “window’ period, it is perfectly okay for a child to be a little slower or faster than others. However, for some children, developmental delays may hinder them from growing to be all they could be. Here are some signs that may signal a need to seek professional help.

Behavioural Warning Signs

  • Does not pay attention or stay focused on an activity for as long a time as others of the same age
  • Focuses on unusual objects for long periods of time; enjoys this more than interacting with others
  • Avoids or rarely makes eye contact with others
  • Gets unusually frustrated when trying to do simple tasks that most children of the same age can do
  • Shows aggressive behaviours, acting out and appears to be very stubborn, compared with other children
  • Displays violent behaviors on a daily basis
  • Stares into space, rocks body or talks to self more often than other children of the same age
  • Does not seek love and approval from a caregiver or parent

Gross Motor Warning Signs

  • Has stiff arms and/or legs
  • Has a floppy or limp body posture compared to other children of the same age
  • Uses one side of body more than the other
  • Has a very clumsy manner compared with other children of the same age

Vision Warning Signs

  • Seems to have difficulty following objects or people with his eyes
  • Rubs eyes frequently
  • Turns, tilts or holds head in a strained or unusual position when trying to look at an object
  • Seems to have difficulty finding or picking up small objects dropped on the floor (after the age of 12 months)
  • Has difficulty focusing or making eye contact
  • Closes one eye when trying to look at distant objects
  • Eyes appear to be crossed or turned
  • Brings objects too close to eyes to see One or both eyes appear abnormal in size or colour

Hearing Warning Signs

  • Talks in a very loud or very soft voice
  • Seems to have difficulty responding when called from across the room, even when it is for something interesting
  • Turns body so that the same ear is always turned toward sound
  • Has difficulty understanding what has been said or following directions after, he has turned three years of age
  • Doesn't startle to loud noises
  • Ears appear small or deformed
  • Fails to develop sounds or words that would be appropriate at his age

Help for Developmental Delays
If you suspect that your child may have a developmental delay, you should talk with your child's doctor as soon as possible. “As children learn developmental skills in a consecutive manner (e.g.: crawl, walk, run), it is key that intervention occurs as early on as possible,” explained Dr Orly Dafni Attia - Head of Paediatrician, specialise in childhood development and autism, Raffles Medical in Ho Chi Minh. “Sometimes a delay in one area can affect the other developmental areas. A child with a speech delay for example may be affected socially and emotionally.”

The doctor will address your concerns, examine your child, and get help to screen or evaluate him for developmental delays.

Every parent desires the best for their child. Your keen observation and concern can help your child develop optimally.

To book an appointment with Dr Orly Dafni Attia, please call 028 38240777 or make an online appointment at here.