Cerebral Palsy

Torticollis

About Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is a term used to describe a condition of neuromotor impairments caused by injury to the brain acquired before or around birth up to the first two years of life.  Cerebral palsy is non-progressive in nature but often has secondary impairments associated with it that occur and progress throughout the lifespan.  Cerebral palsy is characterized by changes in muscle tone, strength and function in one or more of the limbs and trunk and oftentimes movement disorders which further impact function.  Children may be ambulatory with cerebral palsy or dependent on assistive devices for ambulation or mobility.  Children may sit independently or require support to maintain an erect sitting posture.  Pediatric physical therapists (PT’s) use methods to improve strength, range of motion, and mobility and treat the secondary impairments associated with cerebral palsy to increase function and decrease the long-term impact of living with the disability.  PT’s assist children and their families in methods to increase their function at home, school and community environments fostering their independence.

Our physical therapists use different treatment techniques to address the impairments found in cerebral palsy to improve their participation in all facets of their lives.  Each child is assessed individually to determine what their specific needs are, taking into consideration their age, developmental level, family and environmental needs and specific impairments.  Play is incorporated in all that we do as we believe that a child learns best in an environment where they feel positive and happy. 

One area of treatment expertise our therapists possess developed in the care of children with cerebral palsy is neuro-developmental therapy (NDT).  Our physical therapists are certified NDT therapists which involves extensive training in the assessment of children with cerebral palsy and specific handling techniques in their care.  The NDT certified therapist has a goal to improve the child’s ability to function in their environment, minimize impairments, and prevent disabilities through direct handling utilizing the principles of movement science.

Our treament methods

  • Overcoming physical limitations
  • Expanding range of joint motion
  • Building and maintaining muscle tone
  • Increasing recreational capabilities
  • Identifying alternate ways to perform everyday tasks
  • Fostering independence
  • Decreasing the likelihood of contractures, bone deformity
  • Educating children and parents about adaptive equipment
  • Providing sensory stimulation
  • Improving posture
  • Improving gait
  • Minimizing pain and discomfort