Nanny vs Daycare for hyperactive 18-months toddler?
I am having a hard time thinking about best childcare for my little dragon - 18 months old son - as I am returning to fulltime work soon.
I am looking for your experience sharing or advice on who can help with such decisions.
Short version: my son is hyperactive, fidgety, speech delayed, seems to have sensory processing issues (we are getting formal evaluations soon). Would daycare or fulltime nanny suit his needs better? Meaning: do these needs mean he will benefit from one-on-one nanny's attention or group scheduled setting will actually help to drain his energy and add structure?
Two attempts to start daycare haven't gone well so far. Should we push through the adjustment with the daycare like with sleep training? Or because of his needs it will be only hurtful e.g. destabilize him even more (if something like that is possible)?
What types of professionals can help coach on such decisions?
As the common story goes in this group - my son has been overly fussy, poor sleeper, hyperactive since the very first week. He is now speech delayed and doesnt use gestures besides pointing yet, but understands speech well. He also shows signals of sensory processing issues - bites and loves roughhousing in fabrics, bites me and my clothes at every opportunity, seeks stimulation from running over bumps, gravel etc, plays only with push toys or heavy objects, runs non-stop.
We started daycare about a month ago for 1-2 hours every morning. On day 10 he got sick with stomach bug, and after a week of being very sick, became very clingy. It took another week to get him being more independent again. We started daycare again. Day 1 he seemed ok and then with every day he cried more and more while being there, not just at drop-off. The teachers seem to mean well, but can't find way to calm him down. So they just hold him or put him in a stroller and walk in circles. Daycare admin suggested leaving him for more hours at a time (like 3 hours) to "help him adjust". It's a professional daycare with a large group of toddlers and 3 or 4 toddlers per teacher ratio. I am looking into several smaller format home-based daycares.
We have 18 months check with pediatrician coming up and I am scheduling evaluations for SPD and speech delay. In the past pediatrician hasnt been helpful with guiding on such decisions as childcare.
A note on my personal experience: looking after him is and has been exhausting. It's been hard finding a nanny who can handle him and understand his mood changes. Seeing him in complete meltdown at daycare is heartbreaking and triggers crazy amount of mom guilt. I am jealous of parents with kids who can be outside and just sit somewhere with them, and their kid isnt trying to escape like a wet soap.