Early Intervention Services for Young Children with Down Syndrome and Their Families: Recent Trends in the World and Turkey
Children with Down syndrome (DS) usually pass through the same stages in the same order in all areas of development, just like other typically developing children. However, this development occurs more slowly and with some differences in children with DS. At this point, it is very important to start early intervention services for these children and their families as soon as possible. Nowadays, family participation, parent-child interaction, natural setting practices, and the teaching of functional skills emerge as important issues in the early intervention programs presented to young children with DS and their families. In this context, it is observed that studies on parent-implemented early intervention practices have increased, especially in recent years. These practices aim to teach evidence-based strategies to parents, to support the development of young children at the maximum level by transferring these strategies to daily routines and implementing them, to increase parental competencies and strengthen them. These practices are observed to vary according to the needs of children and their families and be included in different application models. In Turkey, early intervention studies have been conducted on young children with DS and their families. However, these studies are very limited. In this study, it was aimed to reveal the trends changing from past to present with regard to early intervention studies performed for young children with DS and their families in the world and in Turkey. It is thought that this study will contribute to researchers and practitioners working with children with DS and their families and will guide the planning of future studies.
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