Providing Web-based Support for Families of Infants and Young Children With Established Disabilities


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Abstract

Infants and young children with established disabilities have significant problems across various domains of development. As a consequence, their parents may face various challenges and difficulties in parenting (M. J. Guralnick, 2004). During the years of infancy (or from the time of diagnosis) and throughout early childhood, parents often have continuing needs to obtain information, identify services for their child, and receive emotional support related to issues with which they are coping. Recently, the Web has become a major source for obtaining information and support, and it has been suggested that the Internet may be utilized to provide information and support to families as a valuable and convenient supplement to face-to-face service provision. This article discusses the advantages and disadvantages of Internet use for parents of children with disabilities, the implications of parents' Internet use for early intervention professionals, and recommendations for professionals interested in developing Web sites to provide information and support to parents.

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