Baby Care

Global Developmental Delay

Developmental delay or global development delay is when a child takes longer than other kids of their age to reach certain developmental milestones.

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This could include learning to walk or talk, how to move, how to learn new things, and how to socially and emotionally interact with other people.

Some children have a short delay in their development that can be overcome with the right help or therapy.

In other cases, the delay may be bigger, and the child may need help for a long time. They may also have trouble learning.

What causes global developmental delay?

Most cases of global developmental delay are caused by problems with the structure or development of the brain or spinal cord, or by problems with the chromosomes or genes. Other causes are preterm birth or contraction of an infection like congenital rubella or meningitis. Most of the time, though, the cause is not found.

Global developmental delay doesn’t have a single treatment, but there are therapies and interventions that can help. These can help a child grow and learn. You can get help from:

  • A Speech and Language therapist

  • An Occupational Therapist (OT)

  • A Physiotherapist

  • Special educator

  • Developmental Pediatrician

Is global developmental delay the same as autism?

Compared to their peers with ASD, children with GDD may have a more noticeable delay in problem-solving, motor skills, and adaptive behaviors.

Studies have shown that it gets easier to tell the difference between GDD and ASD as the child gets older.

Most of the time, children with ASD have:

  • Patterns of behavior (e.g., repeating sounds for non-communicative purposes, flapping their hands, rocking back and forth)

  • No interest in interacting with other people

  • Poor imitation of other people’s actions, sounds, or words

  • Behaviors that are limited (e.g., fixations on non-functional objects within their environment or fixations on one topic or toy)

What are signs of GDD?

Some common signs of GDD are:

  • The child takes longer than usual to sit up, crawl, and walk.

  • Having trouble thinking or reasoning

  • Problems with fine/gross motor skills

  • Poor social skills/judgment

  • Aggression as a way to deal with problems

  • Communication difficulties

Is global developmental delay neurological?

Global developmental delay (GDD) is a chronic neurological condition that often starts early in life. Its causes may be prenatal, perinatal, postnatal, or unknown. The history of a person’s family, physical and neurological exams, and a detailed history of environmental risk factors could help us understand the cause of GDD. Most of the time, the causes can’t be figured out without diagnostic lab tests, brain imaging, and other tests based on evidence. Genetic technology has made a lot of progress recently, which has made it easier to diagnose GDD at a very early stage. However, this is a thorough and expensive test that may not help most GDD patients. One of the main goals of GDD treatment is to fix inborn metabolic errors, even though only a small number of people with GDD have this kind of error. Still, it’s not always easy to figure out what’s wrong because the symptoms of many genetic or metabolic diseases often overlap, and their clinical spectrums are much wider than we know. For the development of well-timed therapeutic applications that could improve neurodevelopmental outcomes, we need appropriate and cost-effective strategies that include up-to-date information for early identification of the “treatable” causes of GDD.

What does it mean for a child to have Global Developmental Delay?

Global development delay, or GDD, is a term for a condition that slows a child‘s mental and physical growth by a lot between the ages of 0 and 18. It means that a child hasn’t reached the level of development expected for their age.

Most of the time, a child with global development delay has missed developmental milestones in movement, speech, or other basic skills that other children have already reached. Children with GDD are likely to be behind in at least two or more areas of development.

Can the global delay in development be fixed?

A child with GDD can often get help from Speech therapy, and Occupational therapy. Some kids might also see a physiotherapist to help them improve their motor skills.

Early intervention (before 3y of age) and intensive stimulation works best when it is given in a child‘s natural environment, like at home, daycare, preschool, or school. The early you start, the better.

Parents Mediated Therapy program, giving parents and caregivers the help, training, and tools they need to help their child reach their goals at the comfort of their house. A child‘s success depends on how much his or her parents are involved in their holistic development.

DH Home Therapy helps children with developmental conditions like GDD, Autism, Speech delay, etc learn skills and get past common problems by creating customized therapy plan for the child.

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