Dr. MJ Bazos MD,
Learning How to Help
You have just learned that your child is
retarded. You have a lot of questions. You probably are worried and a little
afraid. The best thing you can do to help your child (and yourself, too) is to
learn more about mental retardation. How can you get more information and help?
Some tips are listed below.
Read about it.
Sometimes it helps to read about a problem to
understand it better. Your doctor and the other people who evaluated your child
can help you find books, magazines and other information about mental
retardation. Some libraries offer videotapes on this topic.
If you have access to a computer, you can find
many organizations that offer information on the Internet. Your public library
may be able to help you with this search.
You can also get information for your other
children to read. This may help them understand their brother or sister better,
which can help all of you.
Talk with other parents.
Often it helps to talk with other parents whose
children have a similar diagnosis. They may be able to give you ideas about how
to help your child learn. If your child has some behavior problems, they may
have useful hints about things that worked well for them.
You may want to join a support group of parents
in your area who also have children with special needs. These groups meet
regularly and can be very helpful to you, your child and your whole family. You
may also want to join a state or national organization that will give you
specific information about diseases or syndromes related to mental retardation.
Talk to your family doctor and other
Don't be afraid to ask for help or explanations.
Many people, such as doctors, nurses, social workers, therapists, teachers and
psychologists, are committed to helping children with special problems and their
families. They may have ideas to share with you and they may recommend reading
materials, videos and other sources for information and support.