Cognitive Developmental Delay: How Can We Identify It?


Cognitive Developmental Delay: How Can We Identify It?

A cognitive developmental delay refers to the condition of children whose intellectual function and adaptive behaviour are significantly below the expected average for their age. Other names for cognitive developmental delays include intellectual disabilities, cognitive impairment, or cognitive/intellectual disorder.

Data from 4000 families from 6 regions of India revealed that 10-18% of children aged 2-9 years from rural/urban/hilly areas had one or more Neurological Development Delay. Cognitive development delays are the most common types of developmental disorder. According to the Center for Disease Control, cognitive delays occur in approximately 12 of every 1,000 children and can range from mild and moderate to severe and profound.

The main causes of cognitive developmental delay are:

  • Pregnancy Condition: A child can develop a cognitive delay because of injury during pregnancy or inability to develop within the womb. Natal conditions such as the presence of drugs, alcohol, or infections (e.g., rubella) can also cause cognitive delays.

  • Birth Condition: A child can develop a cognitive delay because of problems during birth (such as inadequate oxygen or prematurity).
  • Genetic Condition: A child may inherit abnormal genes or a chromosomal disorder. Examples include Down syndrome, fragile X syndrome, or phenylketonuria (PKU).
  • Health Condition: Malnutrition, untreated diseases meningitis or whooping cough, exposure to poison (such as lead or mercury) and inadequate medical care can also cause cognitive delays.

Some of the early signs that can be detected in the early stages for cognitive delay are as follows:

  • Sitting, crawling, or walking later than other children
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Short attention span: inability to remember things
  • Trouble thinking logically
  • Infantile behaviour that persists into preschool and school years
  • Lack of age-appropriate adaptive/self-help skills
  • Lack of curiosity
  • Trouble understanding social rules or consequences of behaviour

At Jeevaniyam we detect the early signs of cognitive delay with the guidance of our expert clinical psychologist. We do a detailed psychological evaluation to understand the cognitive ability intellectual functions, adaptive skills & adaptive behaviour. We do individualised assessments with the guidance of a clinical psychologist along with the other multi-disciplinary team professionals including speech and language pathologists, physical therapists & special educators.

Our holistic treatment includes personalised Ayurvedic protocol along with internal medications, lifestyle management, dietary interventions, clinical yoga, music therapy, counselling, behaviour modification therapy, sensory integration therapy, special education, supportive education, cognitive enhancement therapy and other need requisite therapies are given at Jeevaniyam to improve the cognitive ability along with the other deficits.

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