TULSA, Okla. — Families are spending more time together and you may be noticing quirks or changes in your child’s development. The signs of learning and thinking differently aren’t always clear.
“He had a hard time paying attention, following directions, he had what a lot of people thought of as behavior issues, he would have meltdowns,” said mom of two sons Amanda Morin. “Our younger son who is 10 he was diagnosed much earlier along... we were able to see that his difficulties with paying attention and his difficulties with staying still were actually a part of ADHD and not a part of just being difficult or not paying attention or not doing the right thing.”
More than 14 million people have learning and thinking differences like attention deficit disorder and dyslexia.
Morin is now an advocate.
Pediatrician Dr. Nerissa Bauer said more parents are noticing different types of behavior in their children because of the pandemic.
“It gives parents a window into new or different behaviors such as difficulty concentrating, potentially meltdowns or tantrums refusing to do work, problems sleeping, problems staying focused,” Bauer said. “When parents see these things in context of school but also are trying to work it can cause a lot of stress.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics is working with the organization Understood on the Take NOTE initiative.
It stands for: NOTICE if there’s something going, OBSERVE and keep track of behavior patterns, TALK about what you’re observing and ENGAGE with professionals.
Understood also launched a digital tool to help families spot the signs of possible learning and thinking differences.