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How do you find a specialist if you want your child to have an independent assessment (am in London)?

(14 Posts)
foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 20:36:43

I'd like dd to see someone this holiday if possible (before she goes back to school). We suspect she has some dyspraxic tendencies - either way (if she does or doesn't), we are looking for techniques to help her cope a bit better with school but want to get some pointers as to what might be up (if anything!).

I have googled but it's hard to know where to start tbh!

castlesintheair Sun 09-Aug-09 20:39:25

I took DS to a private OT and got his dx there and then.

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 20:41:51

I suspect she might need some OT help but what happened after you saw the OT? Can they diagnose or do you have to go to an Educational Psychologist? I'm not clear where the starting point is iyswim.

cornsillk Sun 09-Aug-09 20:43:33

Can an OT diagnose dyspraxia then?

castlesintheair Sun 09-Aug-09 20:49:59

It's a long story but DS wasn't given a dx of dyspraxia (even though it was quite obvious to me) by a developmental paediatrician, educational psychologist (private or nhs) or anyone else. He also has a language disorder (or did) so they were quite focused on that I think. A friend recommended the OT (yes they can diagnose). He has been seeing her once a week since May. I cannot recommend it highly enough. It's the best thing we have done, apart from taking him to a private SALT aged 5.

cornsillk Sun 09-Aug-09 20:54:56

Thanks castles - I've been thinking about getting help for my ds2 - sorry to hijack foxy!

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 20:57:52

no, it's fine cornsilk, go ahead. Everyone's experiences welcome!

I have thought about taking her to an OT but I'm just not sure I even know what to say to them (don't know if that sounds a bit thick lol) but I'm not quite sure IF she has an issue or whether she just needs a bit of guidance or if it is more than that iyswim.

castlesintheair Sun 09-Aug-09 20:59:45

When I wanted to find a private developmental paed I rang the Wolfson Centre which is the neurological part of Great Ormond Street Hospital and asked them to recommend someone I could see privately. You could do this if you don't want to see an OT yet.

castlesintheair Sun 09-Aug-09 21:04:00

sorry x-posts. I had quite a long chat with our OT over the phone first foxinsocks. They get a pretty good idea from that and should tell you if they don't think they can help you.

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 21:10:22

thanks castles. I might do that as I know one of the OTs round here.

I suspect an educational psych might be useful if only to tell me there isn't a problem (which would be good in itself because at least I'd know where to focus our attentions - at the moment, I swing between thinking she has some sort of issue and feeling cross (though trying not to show it) because she's so terribly clumsy/disorganised/lazy and I think I owe it to her to find out whether it is something she can't help or not iyswim!).

LIZS Sun 09-Aug-09 21:15:34

There is a website OTIP which has a directory of those who might have relevant experience and work privately. An OT can do an assessment and make practical suggestions but not give a formal diagnosis. Alternatively an educational psyicholgist could do a more complex study but would n't give you specific exericses so you'd still need OT input. Alternatively ask your gp to refer either to an NHS child development centre or Developmental paed and ot but you may have a wait for an appointment.

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 21:24:58

the problem with dd is that (for her age) intellectually, she's fine.

The school have highlighted her organisational issues as a major problem but tbh, everyone puts it down to her being a bit head in the clouds (which I think is a possibility as both dh and me are a bit like that) but tbh, I think that excuse is starting to wear a bit thin with me.

She's happy but she's struggled recently and I think she's been 'lucky' (for want of a better word) to have additional assistants in the classroom (for children with special needs) who have helped her throughout the year!

Everyone thinks it's nothing major, except for me because I don't think this is her being deliberately cooky, I think she's struggling and someone needs to help her rather than shrugging their shoulders and putting it down to her being a bit spacey.

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 21:27:11

that was a very rambling way of saying I think we could do with OT help but I should probably find out whether the OT help is needed because she has dyspraxia or because she just needs a bit of extra help!

castlesintheair Mon 10-Aug-09 14:36:38

Could also be a sensory thing - SPD - which an OT can also help you with. Same OT has helped 2 of DS's friends with it. Dyspraxia/SPD overlap as do all these things. Fwiw, DS doesn't struggle academically either but has organisational issues as well, fidgety, weird pencil grip and struggles in PE etc - he can do everything, just needs to think about it first if that makes sense? I would definitely recommend ringing the OT you know for a chat smile

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