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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wasn't sure whether to post here or not, because our issues are relatively minor. But I was hoping that maybe someone had a similar experience or could just offer some advice, or support.

My DS is 9.5 month old, and we've had some concerns about his development, specificially gross and fine motor skills. Thanks to MDC I was able to find an ASQ Survey that Early Intervention uses as a screening tool, and I filled that out and it confirmed what I had supsected.

So at DS's 9 month WBV we brought up all our concerns with our Pediatrician, and told her that we were planning on pursuing Early Intervention. She agreed with our decision and we had a developmental screening done.

He qualifies for Early Intervention, and will be receiving therapy every other week. So far we're only working with a Developmental Specialist, because she thinks she can handle his issues and help him gain new ground. She did say if he wasn't gaining skills then we'd be get a referral for a Physical Therapist.

At 9 months DS wasn't sitting up unassisted at all. He would just fall straight over, or bend in half with no attempts to straighten himself. In the last couple weeks he's gotten much better at it, and can sit for an extended length of time, most of the time. But there are times when he just doesn't want to do it and will bend in half or flop over so I'm not sure if he's where he's supposed to be or not. He also cannot put himself into the sitting position.

He does roll over in both directions, and when he is placed on his hands and knees he will stay up for about 5 seconds. But he cannot get onto his hands and knees independently but does support weight on his arms. To get places he rolls everywhere, no army crawling, scooting or anything, just rolling.

He's also not pulling up or cruising along furniture. When we put him in the standing position, his will not bear weight on his legs or feet, he stands on his tip toes.

His fine motor skills are only slightly behind. He doesn't have the pincher grasp, he uses the raking motion to get small pieces of food or he picks it up with his whole hand. It was my understanding that this couldn't really be taught, it just happens when it happens. He also doesn't clap, or wave. But he does know how to open up containers and get objects out, so I don't know if he's truly behind in that area.

The Developmental Specialist said it's hard to tell with DS if he is delayed or if he's just following his own schedule, because he's at the cusp, and said she thinks he's at a hump and just needs some extra help to get over it.

Either way I feel more comfortable having extra sets of eyes on him to help monitor his development and the therapy will give us an idea of what activities and things we can do to help DS.

As a child I had delays in gross and fine motor skills but mine were 18 months behind schedule before they were caught and it made school a nightmare for me, so I'd like to avoid the same thing happening to my son.

So does anyone have any experiences with Early Intervention and an infant? Also our Service Coordinator mentioned something about an ARC program or grant, that we would be eligible for based on our income and would allow us to purchase developmental activities for DS. I've searched online but found nothing about it. Has anyone ever heard about this?
 

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It sounds like you are really on top of things ,& on the right track. However I have no knowledge of an ARC program, nor about purchasing developmental activities. My son has been in the EI program since he was diagnosed w/ CP at about 9 months,but we have had problems w/ our EI program,I do't think they are as educted as they should be. Good luck!!
 

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I agree, it sounds like you're already on top of things. My daughter's pedi referred EI to us, but she's a medical baby and also has CP. She gets EI weekly and PT and OT at CMC weekly. She also goes to feeding team ST. It can add up fast, all these appts.

The ARC program is for kids to get adaptive equipment, toys and other items that insurance won't cover. People use it for ramps, wheelchairs, adapted swings, etc... Your pedi or therapist would have to sign a paper saying your child needed whatever you're trying to get. kwim? There has to be a medical need for it.
 

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Your situation sounds very similar to ours! Our DD also wasn't sitting unassisted at 9 months - or crawling. She rolled everywhere. We had some problems with getting EI started, but once it was up and running, it was great. We also did some private PT, but the EI folks were so much better that we dropped that.

Just to give you an idea of how far we've come, DD is almost 18 months now. She's still not walking, but she crawls (on all fours) very fast, pulls up, cruises, and is starting to let go of whatever she's holding onto. I am hoping she will walk by the end of the summer.

It sounds like you are totally on top of everything. We have PT once a week rather than every other week but I'm not sure that DD wouldn't be progressing just as quickly even with less PT. PM me if you have more questions!
 

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Did a PT evaluate him as well? If you still have questions, IMO, having a PT evaluate him as well can't hurt. My daughter was evaluated during her infancy because she was a preemie by a PT at the NICU follow up clinic at our hospital, and I always found her insight really helpful. Even if you don't need PT on an ongoing basis in addition to your sessions with the Dev. therapist, the PT might be able to suggest some exercises for you to try or just give you some reinforcement that you are on the right track. You are your child's best advocate, and it sounds like you are doing a great job!

As an aside, we used EI for 2 years for speech and OT, and our OT was able to order a couple of pieces of equipment for us that was billed to EI. From what I understand the order process is only as fast as your local EI billing process so it may not be instantaneous, but we were able to get a weighted blanket and mini-trampoline for therapeutic purposes this way. My daughter didn't start sleeping soundly until using the weighted blanket, so it was incredibly helpful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
When we did the developmental screening, we took him to the Early Intervention center, and there was a physical therapist there, who mostly interacted with DS and made observations.

We are supposed to start therapy, next Tuesday with the Developmental Specialist and she will be here for an hour or so. Then our Service Coordinator will be coming in afterwards. I'm not sure if she'll be doing this after every appointment or just once a month but we'll see I guess.

From what we have been told they are going to try a Developmental Specialist first because they can handle a lot of the issues and show us a lot of techniques, exercises and activities to do with DS. But if she feels he's not gaining the skills quickly enough she'll put in a recommendation for Physical Therapy.

Our Service Coordinator said she would be enrolling us in the ARC Program and we're supposed to receive a letter from them, and then respond to it. I think she said it's based on our 2008 tax info and the most we would qualify for is $800. I don't know if EI will give us a list of things they recommend, or if we will compile a list and submit it to them.
 
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