By: Morgan Gibson PT, DPT
Injuries, pain, and complicated diagnoses are incredibly common, especially in children and teens. At Mind and Motion, we aim to provide comprehensive physical therapy treatment for any impairment your child may be facing. If your child is experiencing pain, having difficulty achieving their gross motor milestones, or has acquired a sports injury, physical therapy treatment may be indicated. Our physical therapists are skilled in treating a wide range of developmental and orthopedic conditions that can impact children of all ages.
What is Pediatric Physical Therapy?
Physical therapy is the treatment of functional mobility limitations that have resulted from an injury, pain, or a medical diagnosis. Pediatric physical therapy is therefore just another way of saying physical therapy for kids.” Physical therapists are licensed movement specialists that strive to improve a patient’s quality of life through individualized treatment plans, prescribed exercises, and patient education. Each treatment plan is specifically designed to improve the patient’s mobility, reduce or manage pain, restore function, and prevent disability.
Developmental impairments include impairments and diagnoses that impact a child’s development and their ability to safely move within their environment. Physical therapists work with the child, and their family, in order to improve the child’s functional mobility and their independence. Treatment goals are often centered on maximizing a child’s participation at home, at school, and in their community.
Examples of these conditions include:
- Toe walking
- Developmental delay
- Cerebral palsy
- Spina bifida
- Duchenne’s muscular dystrophy
- Genetic disorders
- Congenital hypotonia
A significant aspect of treatment for developmental conditions is helping the child reach their developmental milestones. These skills include sitting, crawling, walking, jumping, and much more. Developing these skills at an appropriate age can drastically improve the child’s body awareness, coordination, and visual tracking. Proper development of these skills also ensures adequate strength and stability throughout the trunk, shoulder girdle, hip, knee, and ankle. This in turn decreases their risk for movement compensations and injuries as your child ages and becomes more active.
Orthopedic conditions include injuries and diagnoses that directly involve the musculoskeletal system. The skeletal system is made up of bones, joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Chronic pain involving these tissues can slowly develop over time or be acquired from a specific injury.
Examples of these conditions include:
- Joint pain: Low back pain, knee pain, shoulder pain etc.
- Ankle sprains
- Cervicogenic headaches
- Post-surgical recovery
- Sports injuries
- Spondylosis, spondylolysis, and spondylolisthesis
- Hip and shoulder impingement
- Patellofemoral stress syndrome
- Osgood-Schlatter disease
- Sever’s disease
Treatment for orthopedic conditions often includes pain management, strength training, range of motion exercises, manual therapy, and balance training. Addressing the impairments associated with these diagnoses will accelerate the patient’s recovery and decrease their risk for disability or re-injury in the future.
If your child is suffering from an orthopedic impairment, oftentimes an orthopedic physician will refer a child to an adult clinic. Many adult clinics focus heavily on orthopedic conditions while many pediatric clinics focus more on developmental and neurological conditions. In addition, physical therapists at adult clinics commonly see multiple patients per hour due to the independent abilities of most adults. This can be overwhelming for even an older child who may be experiencing pain for the first time or is anxious about their newly developed injuries. For these reasons, it may be beneficial to see a pediatric clinic that has a PT on staff who can address orthopedic impairments.
At Mind and Motion, our pediatric physical therapists are equipped to evaluate and treat both pediatric developmental and orthopedic conditions. We limit the number of patients each physical therapist sees at a given time to provide increased supervision and guidance during exercises and activities. We incorporate toys, games, and specialized equipment into our sessions for children and teens of all developmental stages. This allows patients to constantly be engaged and have fun while working. Every physical therapy treatment plan is customized to the patient and their needs. Our physical therapists closely monitor the patient’s response to each exercise and activity so that care can be adjusted accordingly.
The Mind and Motion Difference
Our facility is truly unique in that we offer numerous services in order to provide comprehensive, well-rounded care. Along with pediatric physical therapy services, we also offer speech therapy, occupational therapy, neurotherapy, and biofeedback.
In addition, we also provide psychological testing and psychotherapy services. We are aware that pain and complicated medical conditions can be emotionally and mentally challenging for patients and parents. Our trained therapists provide a safe and confidential environment in order to navigate emotions and gain coping skills.
Our front desk team strives to coordinate all necessary services with your schedule in order to ensure that your child receives the treatment they require. Through these efforts we hope to address your child’s overall needs and provide the highest level of care.
If you would like to schedule a physical therapy examination or learn more about our services, give us a call at 678-749-7600. We look forward to working with you!