The role of physical therapy in the treatment of cerebral palsy in children
Physiotherapist: A physical therapist is a specialist He is an individual who has obtained a certificate and license to practice the profession after the end of his study period and obtaining a scientific certificate from the Ministry of Health to undertake training and practice the profession mainly and has the ability to practice physical therapy for children and adults and has great experience in dealing with children and treating them with medicine or physiotherapy. He is the specialist in evaluating disease states and the extent of their progress or delay, and he is responsible for evaluating them at all times. He is the person who develops several treatment plans and approaches, what are the goals required through the treatment plan, and the ways in which the treatment plan can be implemented with children with cerebral palsy. In addition to providing the physiotherapist with some instructions, instructions and exercises for the child’s family in order to carry out awareness-raising and home physiotherapy operations to improve the disease condition and speed up treatment.
Where the physiotherapist provides some instructions that the patient’s parents must follow, because they are the most important steps that help in the process of healing children from cerebral palsy, in addition to the possibility of the child gaining more motor and intellectual skills to the fullest extent possible, and the specialist can practice these exercises and instructions at home or After the natural treatment centers or even schools specialized in cases of cerebral palsy patients and treated through physical therapy, so that the child can have a group of people that help him with rehabilitation and strong therapeutic ability.
How can a physiotherapist evaluate cases of cerebral palsy in children:
Before starting the treatment process, the physiotherapist must be able to identify the child, what are his motor abilities, what are the strengths that the child possesses, the weaknesses that the child suffers from, or the lack of motor activity that he suffers from, and this is done by doing some special examinations and some inspections that It is done on the child’s condition and through it the condition can be assessed initially, but the assessment of the child’s condition varies during the period between three months to six months at the beginning of the child’s life stage, In cases of older children, evaluation can be carried out over a period ranging from six months to a full year. There are some tools used by physiotherapists to evaluate cases of children with cerebral palsy, which are:
- The physiotherapist performs standard tests in order to update the child’s condition and range of motion in the child.
- Do a close inspection that follows the movement patterns of the child and what is his ability to use both sides of his body and the limbs and know the extent of the balance and consistency of these motor patterns with the movement of the child.
- The physiotherapist must know all the information about the child from the parents in order to know the child’s health history and his motor history as well and all the information that helps the physiotherapist in the case.
How can a physiotherapist treat a child with cerebral palsy and what are the methods to be followed:
After completing the process of evaluating the child’s pathological condition, the specialist can develop treatment plans and methods that must be followed to treat the child and draw up treatment plans. This is done through:
- Determining the primary goal by the physiotherapist and the participation of parents to achieve the following goals, which are:
- Helping the injured child to increase the possible period of standing upright for as long as possible.
- Stimulating and developing the child and helping him to obtain a general balance.
- The process of moving a single part of the body in an individual way away from the rest of the body, such as the movement of the limbs.
- Maintain a straight limb in case the child is placed on the floor.
- Helping the injured child to stabilize the body in a certain position for as long as possible.
- Maintaining joint mobility and joint range of motion in the child.
- Stimulate and develop the child to carry out the process of balancing the motor aids between the different parts of the body.
- Stimulating the child and increasing his ability to bear pain and fatigue and to do some muscular efforts such as walking or cycling.
- Increasing parents’ awareness of their child’s condition, talking about all points, and getting answers to their inquiries about the child’s condition.
- Allocating the necessary tools and various devices that help the child in movement, including specialized seats for children with cerebral palsy and a splint to stabilize the child’s limb to help him move.
- Do exercises and exercises for the parents in order to carry out the treatment plans at home and what are the ways that must be dealt with with the child to motivate him to do some daily activities.
- By evaluating the child’s condition, the physiotherapist determines the physiotherapy sessions and their number per week or for the period he determines according to the disease condition.
What is the normal number of physical therapy sessions for a child with cerebral palsy:
The physiotherapist sets treatment plans and the number of sessions required, but at the beginning of the child’s treatment stage, three sessions per week must be continued and attendance at these sessions, as the duration of the treatment session extends between 60:50 minutes each time, The number of sessions can be reduced in case of progression of the condition or progress in age, so the number of treatment sessions is reduced to two sessions during the week.
What is the appropriate time by which the affected child should start physiotherapy and what time should the child stop physiotherapy sessions?
One of the best times for a child to do physical therapy sessions is the timing of identifying the child’s condition and the extent of the motor effect, and immediately after diagnosing the condition of the child with cerebral palsy, Where this time can be at the age of six months, but sometimes parents delay in starting physical therapy for the child until the child reaches the age of two years or even the age of one year.
Parents should keep visiting the physiotherapist before or after performing the child’s surgeries, because the specialist can determine the extent of sessions that the child may need during this period.
A cerebral palsy patient may need to perform some surgeries, due to some difficult and arduous efforts that the physiotherapist may perform on the child during the natural sessions, due to the complications that result from the extra effort that the specialist makes, Where the specialist performs some exercises and natural sessions after the child’s surgeries 24 hours or 48 hours after the operation, according to the instructions of the forester.
A person with cerebral palsy may often need to do some physical therapy sessions even in advanced age, but in this case the number of treatment sessions is reduced until it reaches one session during the month and must be followed up and persevered, as this treatment session helps to stabilize the previous physiotherapy period and prevent The occurrence of any complications due to the effort exerted in daily activities.