• Call for help with child development questions

    Nicole Lowe | May 22, 2023

    Parents, guardians and caregivers who have concerns about their child’s development and well-being can now receive free advice and guidance through a new phone service.

    By calling Health Link at 811, Albertans with concerns about their child’s development — including speech, movement and hearing — can be redirected to the new Pediatric Rehabilitation Line and speak with an occupational therapist or another appropriate allied health professional.

    The new Pediatric Rehabilitation Line provides advice to parents and caregivers of infants, children and youth (birth to 18 years) who have concerns about developmental milestones in areas such as:
    • Moving and playing (e.g., crawling, walking, coordination, playing with toys, using utensils).
    • Talking and listening (e.g., babbling, using words and sentences, speech sounds, understanding directions, stuttering, voice quality).
    • Taking care of self (e.g., dressing, toileting, sleeping).
    • Managing emotions (e.g., calming self, becoming overwhelmed or overstimulated).
    • Difficulty eating or swallowing (e.g., coughing, gagging).
    • Hearing (e.g., responding to sounds, noise, voices, words).

    The Pediatric Rehabilitation Line can also help callers who are looking for local services and/or current rehabilitation resources (e.g., links to information or webinars), or need support to help a child or youth recover from COVID-19.
    AHS also offers free webinars that cover developmental topics for children and youth from birth to 18 years. Topics range from toilet training and tummy time to emotional regulation and speech development.

    Hosted by pediatric rehabilitation professionals, the AHS webinar series is designed for all parents and caregivers. It may be especially beneficial for those with children and youth who may be developing differently or have medical conditions that are affecting their development.
    Most sessions are live, meaning participants can ask questions during the session. Some sessions are pre-recorded.

    Each webinar is free of charge and will focus on a specific developmental skill such as walking, talking, listening and more. Parents and caregivers will build skills and gain confidence by learning practical ways to help children and youth improve their skills while supporting development.

    The free webinars are delivered on Zoom and require registration in advance. Information and registration for the free webinars can be accessed at myhealth.alberta.ca/pediatric-rehabilitation/webinars. You may also find information by searching “pediatric rehab” at together4health.albertahealthservices.ca.

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