Prevention and Early Intervention Programs


Positive early experiences are essential for children to have later success in school, the workplace and the community. When a child shows behavioral, social or emotional problems, early intervention is a way to help identify the cause and get the right kind of treatment for the child. Early intervention services to infants and toddlers who have developmental delays have been shown to have positive results across many categories, including health, language and communication, and cognitive, motor, adaptive and social-emotional development. These services support an infant’s and toddler’s development to assist in closing their achievement gap for school readiness.

Information for Parents
Families benefit from early intervention services by being able to better meet their children’s special needs from an early age and throughout their lives. 

Points to Remember:
• Learn which behaviors and skills/developmental milestones to expect of your child at each age. This will help you to identify behaviors that are typically expected. 
• Help your child feel safe and secure by developing daily routines that promote structure.
• If your child is younger than 3 years old, and you, a family member or your pediatrician suspects the child is not meeting the developmental milestones appropriate for his or her age, consult Tennessee’s Early Intervention System.

You’ll find some great early intervention advice from the Centers for Disease Control, as well as a milestones checklist to track your child’s development.

Newborn Hearing Screening Follow-Up
Babies who do not hear may have problems learning to talk. Finding problems early can help. It is important to have your baby’s hearing tested before leaving the hospital or before 1 month of age. Hearing problems need to be identified as early as possible to make sure your baby has the best chance for optimal development. If you have concerns about your child’s hearing, please contact the Newborn Hearing Follow-Up Coordinator at 866-961-2397.

The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY) offers valuable information for families, including:
• Early intervention services in your area
• A list of state organizations and agencies, including agencies for specific disabilities and organizations for parents. Even if an office is not close to your home, they can usually put you in touch with resources in your community, and provide information about disability issues in your state. 
• Additional information for parents and other early intervention providers about helping infants and toddlers with disabilities, ages birth to 3, achieve their full potential. 

Learn about additional resources in Tennessee.

Promote kids' mental health with early intervention.