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Health care plans and specific conditions

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If your child has a diagnosis of allergies, especially if this is an anaphylaxis reaction (severe life threatening allergy) you will need to inform their school so that a care plan can be put into place for your child. You may already have a care plan written for school from your specialist nurse or GP, this can be brought into school. Some training will be offered to school staff in how to manage and spot the signs of anaphylaxis.

Parents/Carers responsibilities

  • Make sure that your child has two auto injector pens (Epipen / Emerade / Jext ) available in school. Find out more at Anaphylaxis UK
  • Make sure that the school are aware that your child has auto injector pens! You may be asked to sign a consent form by the school. If your child self-administers their auto injector pen they need to always tell an appropriate adult when they use one.
  • Ensure both of your child’s auto injector pens are in date! Don’t wait until this has expired to get a new one prescribed, plan ahead.
  • All medication will need to be labelled with your child’s name and date of birth by the pharmacists. Liquid or tablet antihistamines should also be labelled and kept by the school.
  • Your child will need to have their auto injector pen with them on any school trips, swimming, after school clubs and for sports; you will need to discuss this with their teacher
  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments

Find out more about supporting your child with anaphylaxis at the below sites:

NHS conditions - Anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis campaign

If your child has a diagnosis of asthma or hay fever you will need to inform their school so that a care plan can be put into place for your child. They may already have a care plan written for school from their specialist nurse or GP, this can be brought into school. Some training will be offered to school staff in how to manage and spot the signs of any breathlessness.

Parents/Carers responsibilities

  • Know your child’s condition and the signs and symptoms; this will need to be included in their care plan.
  • Make sure that your child’s inhaler and spacer is available in school, depending on their age and school they may be able to carry this around with them.
  • Ensure your child’s inhaler is in date! Don’t wait until this has expired to get a new one prescribed, plan ahead. Don’t forget to take this home at the end of the school year – the spacer will need to be washed with hot water and dried.
  • If you leave your child’s inhaler and spacer with their school make sure that the spacer is kept in a sealed bag, this prevents infection.
  • All medication will need to be labelled with your child’s name and date of birth by the pharmacists. Liquid or tablet antihistamines should be kept by the school.
  • Your child will need to have their inhaler with them on any school trips, swimming, after school clubs and for sports; you will need to discuss this with their teacher
  • Make sure your child attends all medical appointments

Find out more about supporting your child with their asthma at Asthma UK

 

ADHD and ADD

If your child has a diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or attention deficit disorder (ADD) it is important to inform their school. This will support you and your child’s school to work together to ensure they receive the support they need for your child’s specific needs. There may be extra support available for your child in school and this is something you can talk to their teacher or the school SENCO about. If your child has medication they may need a care plan to be put into place. Your child’s school will have a linked school nurse who can offer support if needed.

Parents/Carer responsibilities
  • Know your child’s condition, give the school, SENCO and school nurse examples of situations that may increase feelings of anger, stress and frustration.
  • If your child takes medication in school; ensure your medication is in date! Don’t wait until this has expired to get a new one prescribed, plan ahead.
  • All medication will need to be labelled with your child’s name and date of birth by the pharmacists
  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments

Find out more about supporting your child with ADHD or ADD at the below sites:

NHS conditions - ADHD

Help Guide - ADHD and ADD in children

Great Ormond Street Hospital ADHD

Autism Spectrum Disorder is a lifelong condition that affects the way a person perceives the world, how they behave and how they interact with other people. Autism is a spectrum condition which means that not all people will be affected in the same way.

While ASD will not go away and cannot be “cured”, with the right therapies and approaches all children and young people can be supported to reach their full potential.  

If your child has a diagnosis of ASD it is important to inform their school. This will support you and your child’s school to work together to ensure they receive the support they need for your child’s specific needs. There may be extra support available for your child in school and this is something you can talk to their teacher or the school Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) about.

If your child needs extra support their school does not usually provide, they may have or may need an education, health and care plan (EHC plan or EHCP). This is a document from your local council. It says what education and health needs your child has and what support they should get. This can help either:

  • The school apply for extra money so they can support your child
  • You apply for a place at a school that’s best suited to your child

For more information on this you should look at the Local Offer Website for the Borough that you live in. 

Parent/carer responsibilities

  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments
  • Attend meetings with your child’s school.
  • Know your child’s condition, give the school and SENCO examples of situations that may increase feelings of anger, stress and frustration.
  • Share strategies with your child’s school which help them at home.

Find out more about supporting your child with Autism Spectrum Disorder on the below sites

NHS conditions - Autism

National Autistic Society

Autism Education Trust

Ambitious about Autism

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What is Cleft lip and Palate?

A cleft is a gap or split in the upper lip and/or roof of the mouth (palate). It is present from birth. The gap is there because parts of the baby's face did not join together properly during development in the womb. A cleft lip and palate is the most common facial birth defect in the UK, affecting around 1 in every 700 babies.

What problems can a cleft lip and palate cause?

  • difficulty feeding – a baby with a cleft lip and palate may be unable to breastfeed or feed from a normal bottle because they cannot form a good seal with their mouth
  • hearing problems – some babies with a cleft palate are more vulnerable to ear infections and a build-up of fluid in their ears (glue ear), which may affect their hearing
  • dental problems – a cleft lip and palate can mean a child's teeth do not develop correctly and they may be at a higher risk of tooth decay
  • speech problems – if a cleft palate is not repaired, it can lead to speech problems such as unclear or nasal-sounding speech when a child is older
  • Most of these problems will improve after surgery and with treatments such as speech and language therapy.

Cleft lip and cleft palate are treated at specialist NHS cleft centres. Children with a cleft lip or palate usually have a long-term care plan that outlines the treatments and assessments they'll need as they grow up. The main treatments include:

  • surgery – an operation to correct a cleft lip is usually done when your baby is 3 to 6 months old and an operation to repair a cleft palate is usually done at 6 to 12 months
  • feeding support – you may need advice about positioning your baby on your breast to help them feed, or you might need to feed them using a special type of bottle
  • monitoring hearing – a baby born with cleft palate has a higher chance of glue ear, which may affect hearing. Close monitoring of their hearing is important and if glue ear affects their hearing significantly, a hearing aid may be fitted or small tubes called grommets may be placed in their ears to drain the fluid
  • speech and language therapy – a speech and language therapist will monitor your child's speech and language development throughout their childhood and help with any speech and language problems
  • good dental hygiene and orthodontic treatment – you'll be given advice about looking after your child's teeth, and they may need braces if their adult teeth don't come through properly

If your child has a diagnosis of a Cleft Lip and Palate it is important to inform their school. This will support you and your child’s school to work together to ensure they receive the support they need for your child’s specific needs. There may be extra support available for your child in school and this is something you can talk to their teacher or the school SENCO about.

Parent/carer responsibilities

  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments
  • Attend meetings with your child’s school
  • Know your child’s condition, give the school and SENCO examples of ways your child’s diagnosis may be affecting them.
  • Share strategies with your child’s school which help them at home.

Find out more about supporting your child with Cleft Lip and Palate or their speech, language and communication skills at the below sites

Cleft Lip and Palate Association

NHS conditions - Cleft lip and palate

Afasic

ICAN

Children’s bowel and bladder problems include bedwetting, daytime wetting, constipation and soiling and it is estimated that 900,000 or 1 in 12, 5-19 year olds suffer from a bowel or bladder condition. If your child experiences one of these it can be very stressful and impact on family life.

Most bowel and bladder problems are avoidable and treatable and you can contact the school nurse attached to their school who will be able to provide advice and link you in with local services that can provide advice, support and treatment. 

ERIC, The Children’s Bowel and Bladder Charity have lots of fantastic resources which you can find on their website.

What is DLD?

  • DLD is a common language disorder, where children have difficulties understanding and/or using spoken language, which persist into adulthood.
  • DLD is known to effect 2 children in every class
  • DLD was previously called Specific Language Impairment (SLI), the name was changed to DLD to better reflect the condition.
  • DLD may occur with other conditions, e.g. dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD.

Signs of DLD

  • Every child is an individual, and therefore DLD affects each child slightly differently.
  • Problems understanding and/or using spoken language may include difficulties:
    • expressing what they want to say, e.g. late to start talking or combine words
    • understanding what others say, e.g. questions, instructions and stories
    • with grammar and vocabulary, particularly action words (verbs)
    • finding the words they want to use (word finding difficulties)
    • with memory, listening, paying attention and processing information
    • with literacy (reading and writing) and social skills, e.g. starting interactions or asking for help less often.

If your child has a diagnosis of DLD it is important to inform their school. This will support you and your child’s school to work together to ensure they receive the support they need for your child’s specific needs. There may be extra support available for your child in school and this is something you can talk to their teacher or the school SENCO about.

Parent/carer responsibilities

  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments
  • Attend meetings with your child’s school.
  • Know your child’s condition, give the school and SENCO examples of situations that may increase feelings of anger, stress and frustration.
  • Share strategies with your child’s school which help them at home.

Find out more about supporting your child with DLD at the below sites

Raising Awareness of Developmental Language Disorder

Youtube RALLI campaign

Afasic

ICAN

Royal College of Speech and Language Therapy 

DLD and me 

If your child has a diagnosis of diabetes you will need to inform their school so that a care plan can be put into place for them. Usually a diabetic nurse specialist will complete this with you and the school. Some training will also be offered to staff in how to manage your child’s diabetes whilst they are at school, usually this will be from the diabetic nurse specialist.

Parent/carer responsibilities

  • Know your child’s signs and symptoms for hypo’s and hyper’s, this will need to be included in their care plan.
  • Ensure your child’s medication is in date! Including the one you may have left with the school. Don’t wait until this has expired to get a new one prescribed, plan ahead.
  • All medication will need to be labelled with your child’s name and date of birth by the pharmacists
  • Your child will need to have their medication with them on any school trips, swimming, after school clubs and for sports; you may need to discuss this with their teacher
  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments
  • Find out more about supporting your child with their diabetes in school on the diabetes website 

NHS conditions - Diabetes

What is Dysphagia?

Dysphagia is the medical term for eating and drinking difficulties. People with dysphagia have problems swallowing certain foods or liquids or may have difficulties managing more challenging textures.

Signs of Dysphagia:

  • Coughing, eye watering, face turning red, eye blinking when eating or drinking.
  • Being unable to chew food properly
  • A ‘gurgly’ wet sounding voice when eating and drinking
  • Over time, dysphagia can cause symptoms such as chest infections, pneumonia, a persistent cough and weight loss.

Who can help?

Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist support infants, children and young people who have dysphagia. Children who have sensory issues around eating and drinking or are fussy eaters may be better managed by other professionals -you can find more information on fussy eating here

If you are concerned your child may be presenting with signs of dysphagia then please contact a health professional such as your GP or HV to discuss this further.

If your child has a diagnosis of epilepsy you will need to inform their school so that a care plan can be put into place for them. You may already have a care plan written for school from your specialist nurse or GP this can be brought into school. Some training will be offered to school staff in how to manage and spot the signs of any epileptic seizures; this may include how to administer emergency medication if this has been prescribed.

Parents/Carer responsibilities

  • Ensure your child’s medication is in date! Don’t wait until this has expired to get a new one prescribed, plan ahead.
  • All medication will need to be labelled with your child’s name and date of birth by the pharmacists
  • You child will need to have their emergency medication (If appropriate) with them on any school trips, swimming, after school clubs and for sports; this will need to be discussed with the teacher
  • Ensure your child attends all medical appointments

Find out more about supporting your child with their epilepsy at school

What is selective mutism?

Selective mutism is a severe anxiety disorder where a person speaks fluently in some situations but remains consistently silent in others such as with classmates at school or to relatives they do not see very often. It usually starts during childhood and, if left untreated, can persist into adulthood.

Selective mutism affects about 1 in 140 young children. It's more common in girls and children who are learning a second language, such as those who've recently moved from their country of birth. With early intervention the prognosis for recovery is good, but in some cases it may persist and last right through a child’s school life and sometimes even into adulthood. It is important to understand that those with selective mutism want to speak, but find themselves physically unable to do so due to their anxiety.

When to get help:

You should get advice if you feel your child can talk freely in some situations but not others. Talk to your child’s nursery/school teacher or SENCo (Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator) about your concerns.

Parent/carer responsibilities

  • Speak to your child’s school if you have concerns that they have selective mutism.
  • Learn about selective mutism, a diagnosis is not needed to start making changes to help your child if you suspect they have selective mutism. You can identify and change adult behaviours that are unwittingly maintaining mutism.  See http://www.selectivemutism.org.uk/ for advice. 
  • Attend meetings with your child’s school.
  • Share strategies with your child’s school which help them at home.
  • Find out more about supporting your child with their diagnosis and any current needs at home at the below sites

NHS conditions - Selective mutism 

Selective Mutism Information and Research Association

iSpeak

What is stammering?

Stammering, also sometimes referred to as stuttering, is a relatively common speech problem in childhood, which can persist into adulthood. It is normal for a child to repeat words and phrases, and to hesitate with "um"s and "er"s, when they are sorting out what to say next. Around 8% of children - that's one in every 12 children - will experience stammering, particularly between the ages of two and five. 

Stammering, or stuttering, is when your child:

  • stretches sounds in a word ("I want a ssstory.")

  • repeats parts of words several times ("mu-mu-mu-mu-mummy.")

  • gets stuck on the first sound of a word so no sound comes out for a few seconds ("...I got a teddy.")

  • puts extra effort into saying specific sounds or words. You might notice tension in the face e.g. around the eyes, lips and jaw

  • holds their breath or take a big breath before speaking, so their breathing seems uneven

  • uses other body movements to help get a word out - they might stamp their foot or move their head 

  • loses eye-contact when getting stuck on a word

  • starts to try to hide their stammer: they might pretend they’ve forgotten what they want to say, change a word they have started to say or go unusually quiet.

These types of stammering behaviours will vary from child to child, can start gradually or very suddenly and may come and go over time. Around 75% of children will go on to speak fluently, either spontaneously or with the help of speech and language therapy.

When to get help:

You should get advice if you have any concerns about your child's speech or language development. Treatment for stammering is often successful in pre-school age children, so it's important to be referred to a specialist as soon as possible.

Talk to a GP or health visitor about your concerns. If necessary, they may refer your child to a speech and language therapist (SLT) for an assessment.

Parent/carer responsibilities

  • Speak to your child’s school if you have concerns that they are stammering.
  • Attend meetings with your child’s school.
  • Share strategies with your child’s school which help them at home.
  • There’s lots you can do to help and reduce some of the pressure a child may experience when talking. See https://stamma.org/get-support/parents for advice on strategies to use when talking with your child.
  • Find out more about supporting your child with their diagnosis and any current needs at home at the below sites:

NHS conditions - Stammering

Stamma (The British Stammering Association) 

 

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