Raising a child is challenging enough, but if your little one has a birth defect, the experience can become even more overwhelming, and we completely understand that.
One in 33 suffers from a birth defect, and if a kid has one, it impacts the whole family. Parents of kids with congenital disabilities face many challenges and want to improve their lives.
Nevertheless, it might be helpful to talk with families or other people affected by the same type of congenital disability. They may have some advice on how to deal with your concerns.
In addition, they can sometimes suggest good resources and share what worked for them. It is also possible to gain emotional support and hope by talking with others.
It is essential to understand all options and discuss them with a health care provider because the choices made by one family might not be the best for another.
So, to make it a bit easier for you to care for your child, we’ll discuss a few practical ways to do so.
Birth Defects: What Are They?
Birth defects affect how parts of a baby’s body form or function. It might take some time before the fault is recognized, even though it is present at birth. Problems can sometimes be inherited (passed from family to family). It is often unclear what causes them.
A few birth defects (congenital disorders or congenital abnormalities) don’t require treatment. However, some are more serious and may need lifelong care.
Some common birth defects include:
- Autistic spectrum disorder
- Cerebral Palsy
- Heart Disorders
- Cleft Palate
- Down Syndrome, etc.
We are well aware that raising a child with cerebral palsy, down syndrome, or autism is never easy. Therefore, we have jotted down some practical ways to provide your child and family with the best care.
Let’s look at them without further ado.
Positivity is the key.
Positive reinforcement is essential for children with birth defects, too. Therefore, parents need to praise their children for everything they do. By appreciating their efforts, parents will make their children feel good.
Your child deserves a pat on the back for their work. That way, they will strive to please you more. Additionally, it would be best to reward your child frequently, as this will motivate them to do even better. Finally, you must remember that love is essential for your child’s progress as a parent.
It’s all about consistency.
Routines are essential for all treatments. However, adhering to a routine can produce positive results for children who have genetic defects such as cerebral palsy. Additionally, children with genetic defects enjoy patterns since they have the opportunity to practice what they have learned from their therapist over and over again. Patterns make learning easier for these children.
The results of studies show that children who receive therapy regularly and consistently develop more favorably than those who receive treatment irregularly. As a parent, you need to interact regularly with your child’s therapist and teacher. Then you can use their methods and techniques at home as well.
Don’t give up and be patient.
Raising a child with a congenital disability can be exhausting, especially if you have other children at home. However, with patience and time, you can achieve great results. Choose the best treatment for your child by trying different techniques and treatments.
Use Videos & Activities.
Today, parents can quickly treat their children with special needs with the advancement in technology. Nowadays, dozens of online activities can significantly improve your child’s progress. Find some fun activities that your child will enjoy and use them to connect with them.
Include Them in Everyday Activities.
You may feel that your child is unpredictable, and it’s best to leave them at home while you run everyday errands. Research shows, however, that autistic children adapt more readily to their surroundings when they are involved in everyday activities.
Therefore, it is essential and crucial to involve your child in everyday activities such as grocery shopping, etc., for their treatment.
Fostering a child with congenital disabilities can be challenging for parents. Because of this, it is crucial to seek guidance and support from others who are going through the same situation. Interact with other parents, families, and professionals who have experience with such children.
It is pretty beneficial to converse with someone in the same situation. Additionally, you can ask them for advice on different problems that you may encounter. Support groups have been helpful for parents and caregivers of children with congenital disabilities.
Get a Trained Caretaker.
It is impossible for you to always be with your child. Perhaps you have some chores that need attention, but you cannot bring your child with you. It would help if you had a backup professional who could look after your child while you’re away in such situations.
Many professionals can look after your child while you are away. Find a caregiver who meets your needs and leave your child with them whenever you’re unavailable.
Discussing your concerns with a doctor is the first step towards understanding your child’s needs and providing them with the best possible care. It is also beneficial to talk with someone who has experienced similar circumstances.
Remember, you are the most important person who can make a difference in your child’s life, so never give up.