A Call For Parent Advocates

Tracy Davenport, Ph.D. Health Guide
  • Prior to 1979, most professionals thought children with Down syndrome were not capable of learning to read. It took a group of 15 parents to show the world differently. In 1980, this group of brave parents began working with their children who had Down syndrome to teach them to read. Thanks to those parents, we now know that many children with Down syndrome can learn to read and that some of these children even begin to read at an unusually early age. This is a far cry from what parents of children with this disorder were once told by the professional community.


    The experience of children with Down syndrome reminds us how integral parents can be in shaping both medical and quality-of-life advances.

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    If you are a parent of a baby or child with acid reflux, I am not suggesting that you go against the advice of the professionals. What I am suggesting is that parents of children with a chronic illness or disability are often their children’s best advocates in terms of innovation. In fact, most of the books, products and support groups available for acid reflux were developed by parents of a child with reflux.


    When it comes to caring for a child, parents should be the safety net to ensure all options for treatment and an improved quality of life have been considered.



Published On: June 14, 2007