It is really difficult to come to terms with the reality that your baby has some special needs, that it is not like others and that it has some developmental disability that needs to be taken care of, lifelong. However, unless your child is suffering from debilitating and non-curable disorder like Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, or some other kind of intellectual or cognitive disability, it is not really so grave a situation to worry about. Such types of kids with special needs such as those with dyslexia (having difficulty in reading and writing), ADHD (suffering from lack of concentration), hearing and speech problems, or some kind of physical deformity that prevents them from carrying out their daily activities normally, can be taken care of through specialized schools and special training. Some of them like those suffering from epilepsy, cleft lip, moderate forms of spina bifida, etc. can even attend normal schools and have no special needs.
Complicated developmental disorders
Complicated developmental disorders like Cerebral Palsy (difficulty in movement and motor control in arms and legs with normal or subnormal intelligence), Down Syndrome (normal or subnormal intelligence with delay in physical grown and characteristic facial features), and others that include chromosomal and genetic abnormalities, render the children susceptible to regular problem in leading normal life and necessitate special mentoring, monitoring, upkeep and education. These kids need special schools and special trainers in specialized infrastructural set up.
Special schools for special kids
There are schools for babies and kids with special needs. These schools offer specialized learning environment and support for babies and kids who need them. There are schools for those suffering from autism disorder, cerebral palsy, Asperger’s syndrome, and other forms of mental or severe physical deformities. The Disability Act says that all children with special needs are entitled to get free education up to the age of 18 years. There are some government-run and government supported schools for special kids which have adequate infrastructure, trained faculty and ayah, and experienced management personnel. However, the majority of schools for babies with special needs are run by NGOs and trusts which thrive on donations.
Find out the exact problem with your child
Before admitting your child to a special school, you need to ascertain the problem with the kid. For that you have to ask some questions to the doctor who is treating him or her.
Common questions to be asked to the doctor
- Name of the disability of your baby
- Does the child need more diagnostic tests to ascertain the condition?
- Whether the condition can get better or worse with time
- Which is the best institution to treat or care for such kids
There is no need to be scared when you take care of children with special needs. You need to have a concise idea about the health of your children in the first place. When you know your child better you can be compassionate and caring towards them. If your child is physically or mentally handicapped they may require care round the clock. As you may have several things on your plate as well, it is suggested that you put them in a day care or avail the services of a helper. You should also make it a point that you take your child regularly for outings.