Your Child's Diagnosis
By Terri Mauro, About.com Guide
Getting a Diagnosis
You suspect something's wrong with your child. Learn how to go from worrying to working toward helping your child, with the help of pediatricians and specialists and your own intuitive expertise.
- Ten Questions to Ask the Doctor
- What to Do After Any Diagnosis
- First Five Things to Do: Specific Diagnoses
Researching a Diagnosis
Once you have a diagnosis, the researching doesn't stop. Dig deeper into those alphabet-soup letters to learn how you can really help your child, and be an effective advocate.
Accepting a Diagnosis
Your child is still your child. A diagnosis is the beginning of hope, not the end of it. Find ways to accept and rejoice in what makes your child special.
- Books By and For Mothers of Children With Special Needs
- Books By and For Fathers of Children With Special Needs
- Ten Reasons to Give Thanks for Your Child With Special Needs
It's hard not to feel helpless when your child is ill, but remaining focused and organized is the best way to be an effective advocate for your child. Find information to help you understand your child's condition, tests and treatments, and tools and support to help you put that information to use.
- Diagnosis Index
- What Parents Want from Doctors and Hospitals
- Make a Care Notebook
- Share Your Story Online
Is it that your child won't or can't? So many children with special needs have behavior problems built into their diagnoses, and may act out due to impulses or self-protective routines that we can't understand. That doesn't mean you have to accept chaos as a way of life. Here's some help in handling the unique behavior challenges special-needs kids present us with.
- Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
- Sensory Integration Dysfunction
- Tourette Syndrome (TS)
You know the feeling: Your child is playing in a roomful of kids his or her own age, and you notice how much the others are talking, or playing together, or performing feats of physical dexterity, while your child sits silent, playing alone, relying on repetitive movements. Every child marches to his or her own developmental drummer, but if yours is marching far off the track, you may need to bring in special help.
- Mental Retardation
- Books on Developmental Issues
- Sites of the Day: Developmental Disabilities
- Child Development News
Whether your child has a specific learning disability or just requires a different approach to succeed, there are tools, techniques and therapies that can turn learning from frustrating to fulfilling.
Mental Health Issues
Diagnoses like bipolar, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), and other psychiatric disorders are being applied to children more than ever before. If your child is struggling with mental-health issues, you'll need advice on how to help your child survive away from home and your family survive in it.
- Bipolar Disorder
- Borderline Personality Disorder
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
- Oppositional Defiant Disorder
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Reactive Attachment Disorder
- Books on Mental Health
- Mental Health in the News
- Sites of the Day: Mental Health Issues
Working With Doctors
Medical professionals can be your best friends, or your worst nightmares. Choosing help wisely, maintaining good communication, and feeling confident of your place as an expert on your child can help keep your child's treatment on the right track.
Working With Therapists
You may fight to get your child therapy in school, drive endless miles to reach therapists' offices, perform therapeutic activities at home, or research the latest cutting-edge techniques -- but do you really know what those therapies do, how people become qualified to do them, how they're supposed to help and how quickly? Get the information you need to make good choices.