What is Pediatric Physical Therapy?
Pediatric physical therapists complete evaluations and provide treatment for children who have difficulty with gross motor skills (the movement of the muscles needed to perform everyday functions of the whole body). Children of all ages may require assistance learning to roll over, sit, crawl, stand, walk, run, skip or climb. A physical therapist has vast knowledge of muscles and movement and how the different systems in our bodies work together to achieve these motor targets.
Physical therapy works to achieve the most typical and efficient movement patterns for a child’s body within activities and play so they may become as independent as possible. Physical therapists also evaluate the need for adaptive equipment or orthotics that a child may need to further his or her success.
Physical therapists work with children who have:
- developmental disorders and delays
- neurological impairments
- coordination, motor planning and balance problems
- brain injuries
- physical injuries
Sometimes physical therapy is short-term to address an acute problem, and sometimes it is long-term to address a chronic condition. All physical therapy must be ordered by a physician, and your physical therapist will send regular updates to your child’s physician as required by their practice act.
The physical therapist at The Carruth Center is trained in Neurodevelopmental Therapy (NDT) and licensed in the state of Texas. This advanced training gives her the knowledge to properly assess and treat a variety of neuro-motor and developmental issues, including troubles with strength, endurance, balance, coordination and mobility. Whether using adaptation or working to strengthen and increase range of motion in body parts, a physical therapist can help a child achieve greater mobility and independence in their life.
Physical therapy may be recommended for a school-age child if he/she has trouble with gross motor skills development, including:
- Does the child seem clumsy or fall often?
- Does the child appear unsafe on a playground?
- Does the child have difficulty going up or down stairs, alternating their feet on each step?
- Strength and Endurance
- Does the child get tired during the day?
- Is the child unable to open doors or carry books?
- Is the child unable to sit correctly in a chair?
- Is the child able to get up from the floor easily?
- Does the child have poor posture?
- Does the child bump into things or trip often?
- Does the child have difficulty learning new motor tasks or sequences (i.e., playing sports, dancing)?
- Is the child not meeting typical developmental motor milestones?
- Does the child need some kind of adaptive equipment to help them become mobile?
Please contact Elizabeth Chapa for more information.