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What should I do if I think my child has an IDD?

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If you suspect that your child has an intellectual or developmental disability (IDD) you should first talk with the child’s health care provider. If the health care provider thinks there might be a problem, you should then see a developmental pediatrician or another specialist.

You can also contact your local early-intervention agency (for children under the age of 3 years) or public school (for children aged 3 years or older).1

To learn more about the person(s) you can consult in your area, contact the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities at http://nichcy.org/state-organization-search-by-state.

In addition, your local school system can provide help in diagnosing a child’s condition and evaluating her/his educational needs as part of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which aims to ensure educational services to children with disabilities throughout the nation.2

To learn more about the IDEA, visit: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osers/osep/index.html.


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). Intellectual disability fact sheet. Retrieved August 9, 2012, from http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/pdf/parents_pdfs/IntellectualDisability.pdf External Web Site Policy (PDF - 64 KB) [top]
  2. U.S. Public Law 108-446, Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004. (2004). Retrieved August 25, 2012, from http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-108publ446/html/PLAW-108publ446.htm [top]

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Last Updated Date: 11/30/2012
Last Reviewed Date: 11/30/2012
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