There is nothing more fulfilling than seeing our children thrive and succeed. We want to provide them with every opportunity to reach their full potential and have happy, fulfilling lives, and at a young age a lot of their growth and development is shaped by their learning at school.
However for some children adapting to school and formal learning is more challenging than others.A recent article in The Conversationreported that one in five children have a developmental vulnerability when they start school. And one in ten will meet criteria for a neurodevelopmental condition, such as autism or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
These conditions are hard for parents to detect at an early age, and even when they do have concerns, many are not sure of the best course of action to take. A neurodevelopmental assessment can help.
What is Neurodevelopmental Assessment?
Neurodevelopmental assessment is a comprehensive evaluation that assesses a child’s overall development and functioning. It evaluates various areas of development, such as language, motor skills, cognitive abilities, and social-emotional functioning—identifying any delays or issues affecting your child’s development.
During the assessment process, a trained professional will conduct a series of tests and evaluations to gather information about your child’s abilities and challenges. The process can include a variety of techniques, such as standardised testing, observations, and parent interviewing.
Does your child need a developmental assessment?
If you’re concerned that your child may not be developing at a similar rate to their same-age peers they may benefit from developmental assessment. Some common areas where assessment is recommended include:
Developmental Delays:If your child is not meeting developmental milestones, such as walking or talking, a developmental assessment, as well as aspeech and language assessment, may help identify any underlying issues.
Learning Disabilities:If your child is struggling with learning, such as reading, writing, or math, acognitive and educational assessmentcan help identify any learning disabilities or processing disorders.
Auditory Processing Difficulties:If you child is experiencing difficulty understanding speech, or has a delayed response to auditory information, careful systematic testing through anauditory processing assessmentcan identify auditory concerns and inform the most suitable treatment.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD):If your child has trouble focusing, sitting still, or following directions, anADHD assessmentcan help identify ADHD or other attention-related issues.
Behavioural Issues:If your child displays challenging behaviours, such as aggression, defiance, or impulsivity, assessment can help identify any underlying issues and develop a plan to address them.
In addition to providing important information about your child’s cognitive, emotional, and behavioural development, neurodevelopmental assessments can also help identify potential mental health concerns.
For example, children with ADHD or autism are at increased risk for anxiety and depression. A neurodevelopmental assessment can help identify any symptoms of these conditions early on, so that appropriate interventions can be provided.
Next steps following an assessment
Following the assessment, your clinician will review the results with you in a feedback session to help you understand your child’s strengths, weaknesses and the areas of development to focus on.
In the case that your child needs further support, the assessment results will enable your clinician to develop a personalised treatment program with goals to target areas of weakness and improve communication skills.
We can also provide support and advice for your child’s school, including recommendations for combined intervention, supporting the planning process or simply helping the teaching team identify situations when your child may need more time and assistance to process language in a learning environment.
Unlocking your child’s potential
At neurocare, our team of qualified healthcare professionals specialises in comprehensive evaluations that assess your child’s overall development and functioning. Our assessments can help identify any delays or issues that might be affecting your child’s development—providing valuable information to develop a personalized plan for supporting your child’s success.
Our multidisciplinary team offers a range of treatments for children to assess and support children with suspected or diagnosed developmental disorders. We are also a registered NDIS provider and provide supports under the Capacity Building stream.
We work collaboratively with children, carers, families, and existing clinical teams to set meaningful goals and deliver the support your child needs to unlock their full potential.