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Children's Health

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Learning Disabilities - Topic Overview

What should you do if you think your child may have a learning disability?

If you think your child has a learning disability, speak with your child's doctor, teacher, or school counselor. You can also ask your child about any problems that he or she may be having in school.

You may want to have your child tested. Your doctor or a school professional will ask you what signs of a learning disability you and your child's teachers have seen. Your child will also be asked questions.

A single test can't diagnose a learning disability. Tests may include reading and writing tests, as well as those that focus on your child's personality, learning style, language and problem-solving skills, and IQ (intelligence quotient).

How is a learning disability treated?

A learning disability is treated by using educational tools to help overcome it. Medicines and counseling usually aren't used.

For most children, federal law requires that a public school create an Individualized Education Program (IEP). An IEP details your child's disability, appropriate teaching methods, and goals for the school year. The IEP changes, based on how well your child is doing. You have the right to ask for a change in the IEP if you don't agree with it.

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