Experts Promote Early Detection for Treatment of Intellectual Disabilities
WESLACO – Experts said early detection is key in the treatment of developmental disabilities
Stephanie Hetzel with Tropical Texas Behavioral Health suggested checking for signs of intellectual disabilities starting at the age of three.
Hetzel said the earlier you get the diagnosis from a doctor, the better the chances of treating the condition are. She said the experts can identify and provide resources for a child with intellectual and developmental disabilities along the way.
Karina Munoz takes part of an Edinburg group specializing in early intervention agrees. She said if you start tackling problems, such as sensory deficits early in life, more progress will be seen later in life.
Munoz added she sees the difference right away when she works with children who have had IDD detected early.
"Three to six months, we see progress. They're talking, they're playing. They're engaging with their family. They're requesting for wants and needs in the home,” she said. “The development of the speech really relies on the social interaction you have with a child at home. It's very important and that's what we focus on - educating our parents.”
Hetzel said developmental delays in a child should be identified by a doctor, primary care physician or a diagnostician from a school.
She added there is a very long interest list for children with IDD in Texas. Identifying the delays early helps her organization put the child on the interest list early for better service.