- January 18, 2017
Developmental delay is a common diagnosis for children especially below the age of 3 years. A developmental delay is any significant decrease in skills in a child's physical, cognitive, behavioral, emotional, or social development, when compared to children of the same age.
Developmental delays can be caused by very specific diagnoses such as traumatic brain injuries, cerebral palsy, and Autism Spectrum Disorders or from non-specific causes due to unknown factors. Environmental and cultural factors may also play a role in the child’s ability to develop age appropriate skills. Developmental delays can affect one or all of the developmental domains and the severity can range from mild to severe.
To understand if a child has a developmental delay, knowing what is typical is necessary. Often time parents suspect a delay in their child but are told they may grow out of it or it is nothing to be concerned about. Sometimes parents are unaware of the child’s delays, thinking that this is just his/her personality. Understanding normal development can help a parent determine if their child is developing in an age range that is typical.