Physical therapy can help more than athletes, post-operative patients, and adults. Children can experience injuries or delays in development that make completing tasks or playing difficult. Setbacks in development and injuries make it difficult for a child to reach their full potential or achieve independence at school, at home, and in the community.
Pediatric physical therapy is the term used for patients whose ages range from newborn to 18-years-old. Physical therapists can assist with improving range of motion, strength, flexibility, and movement patterns. For children, pediatric physical therapy is more play-based with games and activities that facilitate rehabilitation but make therapy fun and engaging. Your physical therapist can also provide exercises and games that would be beneficial for your child to do at home too.
Physical therapy can help kids with many issues such as:
- Sports recovery
- Prevention of sports-related injuries
- Delays in development, such as an infant who should be walking or crawling
- Not hitting age-related milestones, such as sitting, walking, or jumping
- Genetic disorders, such as Down Syndrome
- Muscle weakness
- Poor coordination or motor planning, such as difficulty completing a physical task when asked like writing with a pencil or playing hopscotch at recess
- Nerve/muscle conditions, such as cerebral palsy or spina bifida
- Wheelchair fittings or consultations regarding assistive devices
- Scoliosis assessments