Diagnosis of a learning disability

If you are worried that your child's development is not progressing as it should or that they may have special needs you should consult your GP. Try to gather as much information as possible to support your concerns before making an appointment as this will assist the GP in diagnosing any potential problems. 

Make a list of the main things that are worrying you and talk to other people who have contact with your child like:

Family members. Ask other family members to comment on your list and any other concerns they have. Write down the extra concerns if you agree with them.

A Health Visitor (if you have access to one). A Health Visitor can refer you to a specialist via your GP if they agree with your concerns.

A child minder who has had prolonged experience of your child. Add their concerns to your list and reference them on your list.

A class or nursery teacher who knows your child well. Class or nursery teachers may often be the first to notice any difficulties your child may be having. Add their concerns to your list and reference who raised the concern.

The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO).  Every educational setting, school or nursery, will have a SENCO. If a SENCO thinks your child has Special Educational Needs for which special educational provision needs to be made they should have contacted you directly anyway.

Parenting Special Children. It can often be helpful to talk to other parents who have experience of waiting for a diagnosis. Parenting Special Children have a whole range of services for parents of children waiting for a diagnosis or who have just received a diagnosis. Visit their website for contact details.

Reading Mencap, Family Advisers, You can even talk to us and get the experienced view of a Family Adviser to offer advice or help you to put your worries into writing. Telephone for an appointment on 0118 966 2518 or drop in at 21 Alexandra Road, Reading, RG1 5PE during office hours 9.30am to 1.30pm, Monday to Friday.

Remember, you know your child best of all, and if you are still worried it is best to talk to your GP.