Global Developmental Delay

Global Developmental Delay: Causes, Symptoms and Management

The term “Global Developmental Delay” is used when a child is both cognitively and physically behind other children their age. A child may have a developmental delay when he or she is behind in one or more parts of development, such as motor skills, speech, cognitive abilities, or social and emotional development. When this happens, there will usually be a specific condition present such as Fragile X syndrome or another form of chromosomal abnormality. Unfortunately, this can be very difficult to diagnose.

In addition to failure to thrive, other terms linked to this condition include intellectual disability, developmental disability, and failure to thrive (which is focused on both failure to thrive and failure to thrive).

Read: Developmental Coordination Disorder

Difference between global developmental delay and autism spectrum disorder

GDD presents fewer learning barriers than autism spectrum disorder, even though there are many similarities in behaviour and development. A study found that children with GDD had better imitation skills than children with ASD, a key early learning skill. 

When interacting with others, children diagnosed with GDD typically respond more appropriately than children without GDD. It has been shown that children with GDD present with a greater delay in their ability to solve problems, develop motor skills, and engage in adaptive behaviors compared to their peers with autism spectrum disorder.

Studies have shown that as the child gets older, it becomes easier to identify the differences between GDD and ASD. 

Children with ASD typically present with:

  • Repeated behaviors (e.g., flapping hands, rocking back and forth without communicating)
  • Having difficulty interacting with others socially
  • Imitation of other people’s actions, sounds, or words is limited
  • Fixations on one topic or toy or fixations on nonfunctional objects in their environment

Global developmental delay causes

A child’s development may be delayed by learning disabilities; in such cases, support can usually be provided by physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and speech therapists to help them meet their developmental goals. As well as genetic disorders, children can suffer from infections such as meningitis and encephalitis as well as metabolic conditions like hypothyroidism, which may cause a permanent delay in their development.

Since congenital metabolic problems are often screened for in the neonatal period, it is more likely that older children will experience developmental delays due to metabolic disorders. Alcohol is a toxic substance, especially during pregnancy, which can affect the fetus’ neurological development and cause developmental delay, such as fetal alcohol syndrome. Many children will not receive a diagnosis of a delay, despite many known causes.

Global developmental delay symptoms

Global developmental delay affects children differently and can present in a variety of ways. Children who have GDD may experience delays in many areas of development. They may experience delays in:

  • Speech and language development
  • Gross motor development (walking, crawling)
  • Fine motor development (holding toys, drawing)
  • Thinking, understanding and learning
  • Making friends and interacting with others
  • Emotional regulation
  • Daily living activities (getting dressed, using the restroom)

Children and their families can function in different ways depending on the combination and degree of delays in their development. In order to come to a diagnosis, children may undergo a range of assessments, such as:

  • Vision and Hearing tests
  • Speech and language assessment
  • Behaviour tests
  • Cognitive assessment
  • Activities of daily living assessment
  • Blood tests
  • Genetic and chromosomal tests
  • MRI
  • Neurological test

Read: Intellectual Development Disorder

Global developmental delay diagnoses

Checking a child’s development during wellness visits is part of developmental monitoring. A program called “Learn the Signs. Act Early” is designed to help parents monitor their children’s development, with materials that measure how children play, learn, speak and act. Doctors or other specialists may need to take a closer look at a child who has missed milestones; this is typically done by doing a Developmental Screening.

Developmental Screening can be an intensive process. A survey asking about a child’s development will be given to the parent by an evaluating professional. The survey will cover language, movement, thinking, behavior and emotions. AAP recommends that all children under the age of 9 undergo developmental screenings at 18 and 30 months.

All children should also have their development monitored specifically for autism spectrum disorders (ASD) at their 18-month and 24-month well-child visits, according to the AAP. A developmental evaluation should be conducted if the child’s Screening indicates a delay.

The purpose of developmental evaluations is to identify and diagnose developmental delays and conditions. These evaluations can be conducted by a developmental pediatrician, child psychologist, or other trained professional.

  • An array of chromosomes and karyotyping are performed to determine whether there are trisomies, microdeletions and duplications. The test is the most accurate and is used in all cases as the first step of diagnosis, but it misses balanced translocations as well as low-level mosaicisms.
  • Some disorders, such as Rett syndrome, can be tested for specific genes, but these tests are expensive and aren’t widely available.
  • If no other underlying cause is evident, selective metabolic investigations are useful, with specific tests performed based on the presentation. Metabolic disorders caused by inborn errors of metabolism are rare, and even if they are diagnosed, they have limited treatment options.
  • It’s a good idea to do a targeted MRI brain scan in selected patients, especially those with abnormal physical signs such as macrocephaly, microcephaly, a change in head circumference, neurological symptoms, or epilepsy.

In the UK, there is a screening program to diagnose certain inborn metabolic disorders at the time of birth (Guthrie test). The goal is to manage these disorders so that permanent damage to the fetus is avoided.

  • Medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency
  • Homocysteinuria
  • Congenital hypothyroidism
  • Isovaleric acidaemia
  • Glutaricaciduria type 1
  • Maple syrup urine disease

Some other amino acid, organic, and urea cycle disorders can be covered by newborn screening in Canada, the United States, and the Netherlands.

Read: Pervasive Developmental Disorder

Managing the development delay

Individual management plans will depend on the child’s underlying diagnosis and his or her specific needs. The key to supporting the child is to provide early intervention. Child specialists who work with GDD include

  • Speech therapists
  • Physical therapists
  • Occupational therapists
  • Hearing specialists (Audiologist)
  • Developmental paediatricians
  • Neurologists
  • Service providers for early intervention services (based on location)

Parenting is not just about professionals – parents can help their kids grow by playing with them, reading to them, teaching them how to do things, and helping them with things like washing up, dressing, eating, and going to the bathroom.

Related Posts

73 thoughts on “Global Developmental Delay: Causes, Symptoms and Management

  1. It was really helpful to read an article like this one, because it helped me learn about the topic.

  2. It’s really a nice and helpful piece of information. I am glad that you shared this helpful info with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

  3. It?s in point of fact a nice and useful piece of information. I?m happy that you simply shared this useful info with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

  4. I have been exploring for a little for any high-quality articles or blog posts on this sort of area . Exploring in Yahoo I at last stumbled upon this website. Reading this info So i am happy to convey that I have an incredibly good uncanny feeling I discovered exactly what I needed. I most certainly will make sure to don?t forget this web site and give it a glance regularly.

  5. Thank you for posting this post. I found it extremely helpful because it explained what I was trying to say. I hope it can help others as well.

  6. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I’ve truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts. After all I will be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again very soon!

  7. Heya i am for the primary time here. I came across this board and I find It really helpful & it helped me out much. I’m hoping to offer one thing back and help others like you aided me.

  8. Thanks for your post, it helped me a lot. It helped me in my situation and hopefully it can help others too.

  9. Make sure you have your email list box strategically placed around the first page of your blog, to make it easy for visitors to register their email.

  10. Thank you for writing so many excellent articles. May I request more information on the subject?

  11. Dear can you please write more on this? Your posts are always helpful to me. Thank you!

  12. The outgoing Portman was a key author of the bipartisan infrastructure law which contained a crypto tax provision the industry lobbied unsuccessfully to defeat.

  13. Your diligent work has not been unnoticed. The entire senior management team would like to congratulate you on a job well done.

  14. Magnificent items from you, man. I have bear in mind
    your stuff previous to and you are simply too great.
    I actually like what you have acquired right here, really like what you’re stating and
    the way wherein you are saying it. You make it enjoyable and you
    still take care of to keep it smart. I can not wait to learn far
    more from you. That is really a terrific site.

  15. ” Thanks for the how-tos and all your valuable information!! I greatly appreciate it!” “Your blog entries are always hilarious.

  16. I like the valuable info you provide in your articles. I’ll bookmark your
    weblog and check again here regularly. I am quite certain I will learn a
    lot of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

  17. I’m no longer certain where you’re getting your information, however good topic. I must spend some time learning more or working out more. Thanks for fantastic info I was in search of this info for my mission.

  18. Hello There. I found your weblog using msn. This is an extremely neatly written article. I will be sure to bookmark it and come back to read extra of your helpful information. Thanks for the post. I will definitely return.

  19. It’s great to have all this great information along with the how-to’s! Thanks so much for sharing!

  20. Thanks for this article. I’d also like to mention that it can become hard when you are in school and simply starting out to create a long credit ranking. There are many learners who are just simply trying to endure and have long or beneficial credit history can sometimes be a difficult element to have.

  21. Valuable information. Fortunate me I found your web site by accident, and I’m surprised why this coincidence did not took place earlier! I bookmarked it.

  22. I am curious to find out what blog platform you happen to be using? I’m having some minor security issues with my latest website and I would like to find something more safe. Do you have any suggestions?

  23. I savor, lead to I found exactly what I used to be having a look for. You have ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a nice day. Bye

  24. Hello There. I discovered your weblog the use of msn. That is a really well written article. I抣l make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your helpful information. Thanks for the post. I抣l definitely return.

  25. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an extremely long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyhow, just wanted to say excellent blog!

  26. “Thank you so much for sharing all these great how-to’s with us!! It is very helpful.” “You always have good humor in your posts / blogs. So enjoyable.

  27. For being the first person to come in and the last person to leave, we commend your dedication and diligent work!

  28. This design is spectacular! You certainly know how to keep a reader amused. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Excellent job. I really loved what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it. Too cool!

  29. I have learned new things by your site. One other thing I’d really like to say is the fact newer computer system operating systems tend to allow additional memory to use, but they as well demand more ram simply to operate. If a person’s computer cannot handle a lot more memory plus the newest computer software requires that ram increase, it may be the time to shop for a new PC. Thanks

  30. Interesting post made here. One thing I would like to say is most professional fields consider the Bachelor’s Degree like thejust like the entry level requirement for an online college degree. While Associate Diplomas are a great way to get started on, completing the Bachelors starts up many good opportunities to various professions, there are numerous internet Bachelor Course Programs available from institutions like The University of Phoenix, Intercontinental University Online and Kaplan. Another issue is that many brick and mortar institutions offer Online types of their qualifications but often for a substantially higher fee than the corporations that specialize in online higher education degree programs.

  31. Thanks for another great article. Where else could anybody get that kind of info in such an ideal way of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I’m on the look for such info.

  32. It is appropriate time to make a few plans for the longer term and it’s time to be happy. I’ve learn this publish and if I could I desire to suggest you few fascinating issues or suggestions. Maybe you can write next articles referring to this article. I desire to read more issues about it!

  33. I’m extremely impressed with your writing skills as well as with the layout on your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself? Anyway keep up the excellent quality writing, it’ll rare to see a great blog like this one today..

  34. Thanks for your article. It is extremely unfortunate that over the last one decade, the travel industry has had to fight terrorism, SARS, tsunamis, flu virus, swine flu, along with the first ever real global economic collapse. Through everthing the industry has proven to be strong, resilient along with dynamic, discovering new strategies to deal with adversity. There are often fresh troubles and opportunity to which the industry must again adapt and answer.

  35. I do agree with all of the ideas you’ve presented in your post. They’re very convincing and will certainly work. Still, the posts are very short for novices. Could you please extend them a bit from next time? Thanks for the post.

  36. I’ve recently started a blog, the information you provide on this site has helped me tremendously. Thanks for all of your time & work.

  37. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this site. I’m hoping the same high-grade web site post from you in the upcoming as well. In fact your creative writing skills has encouraged me to get my own site now. Actually the blogging is spreading its wings fast. Your write up is a good example of it.

  38. Thanks for discussing your ideas in this article. The other matter is that every time a problem takes place with a pc motherboard, people should not consider the risk of repairing the item themselves for if it is not done properly it can lead to irreparable damage to an entire laptop. It is almost always safe just to approach your dealer of that laptop for the repair of that motherboard. They’ve got technicians who have an competence in dealing with pc motherboard troubles and can carry out the right prognosis and conduct repairs.

  39. Good web site! I really love how it is easy on my eyes and the data are well written. I’m wondering how I might be notified whenever a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS feed which must do the trick! Have a nice day!

  40. Thank you for another great article. The place else may anyone get that type of information in such an ideal means of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I’m at the search for such information.

  41. Fantastic site. Plenty of helpful info here. I’m sending it to some friends and additionally sharing in delicious. And of course, thanks on your sweat!

Comments are closed.