Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wellness Wednesday - Consider the Source!

When I prepare to do an evaluation on a student, I gather lots of information. I look at records, visit with teachers, and interview parents. I also make observations and may collect data from doctors.

Then I look at everything I've collected, and consider the source.

Medical diagnoses don't mean anything unless I have information from the doctor. Opinions from your relatives and friends carry no weight with me.

When the teachers report the student is sleeping in class, the student appears drowsy during observations, and the child states she never naps at school, what do you think I put in my evaluation?

Parents need to exercise the same cautions. Everyone has an opinion, and they will feel free to share them with you. There seems to be an epidemic of well-meaning acquaintances making diagnoses based on media information.

What can you do?

  • Tell them you appreciate their concern, but you prefer to consult with your pediatrician. If you still have concerns, contact the local school district for a free evaluation. 
  • Don't listen to any "treatments" they may recommend if they aren't certified experts in the field. At best, you waste time and money; at worst, you may physically harm or even endanger the life of your child. 
  • If they persist, tell them the subject is closed. 
  • Above all, seek advice from an expert. Even the parent of a child with special needs only knows their youngster, and isn't qualified to legally tell you what to do. 
  • Remember that celebrities aren't medical or educational experts. Their opinions aren't worth much. 
  • Send me an email at if you still need help.
How do you respond to those who try to diagnose you or your child?