We had brought this up with our pediatricians in the past, but we were more focused on getting a handle on his eczema and the Doctors just kept telling us he was a little behind, but not to worry, he would catch up. As a year at my "new" job rolled around and I got on group insurance we found ourselves needing to find a new pediatrician. To be honest we waited a little long to get him in for his checkup, and shots. Our new pediatrician saw him for his 18 month checkup, and agreed with us, for the first time, that there was cause for worry. He also is the first Doctor who gave us advice and RX's that worked on his eczema, but that's another story.
He suggested we see a Developmental Pediatrician, but he warned us the only ones were in Little Rock (about 4 hours away) and it took 6-8 months to get in. We agreed and they got the ball rolling. To our great surprise we got a call a week later that they were going to be in our area in about a week, and could get him in!!! Turns out they come up about once a month and do appointments just for our area!! WOOHOO!! So we go to the appointment and visit with the DP, he agreed there was a "little bit" of cause for more testing (evaluation) and as luck would have it there were Behavioral and Cognitive pathologist there that were doing evals. So we got to get that done too. What we found was that our fears were well based, except instead of the "little behind" or a "little bit of concern" they said there was no doubt he was very behind, mainly in language, but really in all areas. About 6 months in many areas, and speech he was almost a year behind.
This was far beyond the "little behind" we had been hearing. The bottom line was "We don't diagnosis Autism at this age, we don't really feel comfortable until there has been some therapy, but with that said, he's Autistic to some degree (has indicators), we'll retest and find out how much in 6 months." I think we seem lucky, even though he's not talking, he seems to be in the mild part of the spectrum. It could be far worse. Now we just have to wade through the TEFRA stuff and get him into a "Developmental Day Treatment Center" ASAP.
One thing we've found is there's TONS of help, HOWEVER..... everyone seems confused who to get with, when, who does what, and what the "rules" are. We were told the centers will take him before he's approved, the centers say no. We were told to call a lady and she would walk us through the app process, she says no, she helps with OTHER programs once we're approved and it's another lady we need to help us with THIS program. Of course THAT lady isn't answering her phone, we get a Voice Mail. And the lady we did talk to said much of what we were given to fill out was SUPPOSED to be filled out by the other lady before we even left, so now we have to go back and have them do it right.... ***SIGH*** Everyone is trying to be helpful, but no one seems to know exactly what we need to be doing, we keep getting pointed in the wrong directions. Everyone says "Contact this person, they know what you need to do" we contact them and then get told "No, I don't do that, this person does." And the center that is closest to us isn't returning our calls.... Might have to show up on their doorstep!!! We were told he needs to get in NOW before LATER!!
To say the least our anthill has gotten kicked, we're chasing our tails trying to get stuff done and getting nowhere yet...... but once our calls start getting returned maybe that will all change... Crossing our fingers!