Breast-feeding prevents ear infections during the first six months. Bottle-fed babies should not drink with the bottle propped or while lying on the back. Adults should not smoke around an infant, since the smoke irritates the lining of the nose and throat. Early treatment prevents most problems.

early childhood assessment Testing that identifies early developmental and learning problems in preschool and primary grade children. Early childhood assessment practices allow for accurate and fair identification of the developmental needs of infants, preschoolers, and young children.

Sound early childhood assessment should involve a multidisciplinary team, including school psychologists with specialized training in the assessment of the young child, and those who view behavior and development from a longitudinal perspective.

Early assessment of potential problems is essential because of a child's broad and rapid development. Intervention services for any psychological and developmental problems are essential and cost-effective.

Standardized assessment procedures should be used with great caution in educational decision-making because such tools are inherently less accurate when used with young children. Multi-disciplinary team assessments must include multi ple sources of information, multiple approaches to assessment, and multiple settings in order to yield a comprehensive understanding of children's skills and needs. Therefore, assessments should center on the child in the family system and home environment, both substantial influences on the development of young children.

early intervention program A program designed to identify and provide intervention for infants and young children who are developmentally delayed and at high risk for school failure. The purpose of this type of program is to help prevent problems as the child matures.

These programs address the needs of young children from birth to the beginning of school with a collaborative effort from parents and medical personnel, social services, and educational professionals. The pre-academic skills that may need help include self-concept, fine and gross motor skills, awareness of sounds, visual discrimination, communication and language development, thinking skills, and social skills. Nationally recognized early intervention programs include Project Head Start and Reading Recovery.

eating disorders Complex conditions caused by a combination of long-standing behavioral, emotional, psychological, interpersonal, and social factors. Scientists and researchers are still learning about the underlying causes of these emotionally and physically damaging conditions. While eating disorders may start with a preoccupation with food and weight, they are usually triggered by many other factors besides food.

Children with eating disorders often use food and the control of food in an attempt to compensate for feelings and emotions that may otherwise seem overwhelming. For some, dieting, bingeing, and purging may begin as a way to cope with painful emotions and to feel in control, despite the fact that these behaviors will eventually damage the child's health, self-esteem, and sense of competence.

Scientists are still researching possible biochemical or biological causes of eating disorders. In some individuals with eating disorders, certain chemicals in the brain that control hunger,

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Breaking Bulimia

Breaking Bulimia

We have all been there: turning to the refrigerator if feeling lonely or bored or indulging in seconds or thirds if strained. But if you suffer from bulimia, the from time to time urge to overeat is more like an obsession.

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