Every child with Down syndrome needs to receive adequate treatment early, being allowed to live a healthy and happy life. This condition can trigger intellectual impairment and numerous physical disabilities. Therefore, it needs to be addressed in a correct way, with a plan for the long-term future of the affected child.
The First Step
Before anything else can be done, you need to establish the course of your child's treatment. Since every child with Down syndrome needs all the help he/she can get, you may want to include a team of people close to you into the process of bringing this child up. Grandparents, parents, babysitters, teachers, health practitioners and many other people can help you and your child significantly. So, gather your team and stay consistent with it, developing a plan which has the potential of being a successful one for your child.
Down Syndrome Goals
Consult with your team regarding the strengths and weaknesses of your child. Ask every member to put these down and include aspects such as personality, temperament, preferred activities, physical challenges, milestones in the development, problems regarding conduct or emotions, friendliness and learning. Based on the results, develop the goals, emphasizing areas where improvement is necessary. However, the goals need to be realistic and safe for the child.
Also, the goals need to be straightforward, understandable and plain. For example, if you desire you child to learn something by the end of the first year of his/her life, write that down as simply as possible.
If a goal happens to be too delicate, divide it into subgoals. Additionally, write down the methods you will be using in order to manage every single step on the way to achieving the goal. If your child needs to learn 10 new words in 3 months, divide the words equally to smaller periods and make sure that the progress can take a gradual course. Yet, do not forget to leave enough time for proper evaluation of the progress and modifications or repetitions, if these are necessary. If something goes wrong, change the method or the process. Finally, motivate the child by rewarding him/her for each successfully finished step.
Ultimately, as your child grows older and enters his/her teen years, include him/her in the process of making and achieving goals. Together, the two of you, along with the rest of the team can make all the difference, guiding the child through life, making sure that this experience is optimally positive and productive.