Cerebral Palsy Physical Therapy Treatment
(Physical Therapy for Child and Adults with CP)
Cerebral palsy is a lifelong condition which occurs because of insult to immature brain before, during and after birth. This causes multiple disabilities in child which include inability to sit, stand and walk along with problem in speech, hearing, vision, epilepsy, growth abnormality, loss of immunity, mental retardation. Motor issues in cerebral palsy include problem in balance, coordination, muscle weakness, abnormal tone and abnormal movement. Physical therapy is the mainstay in management of this problem.
Traditional physical therapy does not help these children and even some time they can do harm to these children. Traditional therapy includes joint mobilization & stretching exercise. Fast and repeated joint mobilization can increase frequency and intensity of abnormal movement and increases chance of dystonic pattern. Stretching exercise can make muscle sore.
Advance physical therapy modalities include Neuro-developmental therapy, sensory integration, strength training exercise, constrain induced movement therapy, mirror therapy and different yoga posture etc. children with cerebral palsy can have combination of various movement disorders so every child need separate set of multimodal therapy program. Period of physical therapy can be divided in intensive therapy, therapy with close monitoring and maintenance therapy program. Intensive therapy program is needed during early age of child or first contact of child with disability and should be continued till the child achieves good functional milestone and parents learn all the therapy techniques to continue those at home. This intensive therapy can only be performed at rehab center. Second phase of therapy program can be done at home with the training of parents and with close follow-up. This phase lasts till child achieves maximum functional and physical capability. Maintenance phase is required for long time till the maturity because muscle weakness, tone abnormality, abnormal movement disorder & balance issues stay with child for long time. Contracture and bony deformity can develop with increase in height and weight with aging so close watch and maintenance therapy is required. Yoga and Gym exercise are very helpful for adolescent and adult with cerebral palsy for maintaining healthy and good quality of life.