Simple Ways to Care for a Child with Cerebral Palsy |
As a permanent disorder, cerebral palsy is caused by brain damage. A child’ brain can be damaged due to a number of reasons – abnormal development of brain and brain injury. There are also chances that the brain damage may occur before the child’s birth, during the birth or immediately after his birth.
Often cerebral palsy affects the child’s motor skills, body movement, muscle control, muscle tone, muscle coordination, posture and balance. Also, the disorder can also be accompanied by communication, behavior, sensation, cognition, perception and similar disturbances. Unfortunately, there is no cure for this permanent disorder.
But orthopedics tries to reduce effects of cerebral palsy through physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, orthotic devices, and medications. Many orthopedics try to resolve behavior or adjustment issues by providing counseling. But the parents must keep in mind some simple tips to manage a child with cerebral palsy more efficiently.
Points to Consider while Caring for a Child with Cerebral Palsy
- Each parent must accept the fact that the child is suffering from cerebral palsy which is a permanent disorder. Once the parents accept the fact, they will frequently explore ways to keep the child healthy and happy. Also, they will take care of the child properly by identifying his strengths and weaknesses.
- It is also important for the parents to keep the child with cerebral palsy motivated, and avoid all things that make him feel intimidated. For instance, there are always chances that the child with cerebral palsy will feel intimidated when his father/mother compares him with a normal child. You must avoid all activities that make the child aware of the permanent disorder.
- You can always consider availing support from various sources to resolve emotional issues. For instance, you can avail the services of a health care provider to keep the child healthy and happy. Likewise, you can educational program by collecting information from various sources to make the child learn new things. You can even stay connected with other parents with children with cerebral palsy to provide and receive emotional support.
- You also need to keep the child happy and engaged by playing games or performing exercise steps. Based on the child’s strengths and preferences, you can easily pick the right game and have fun. Likewise, you can consult the physical therapist to find out the exercise steps your child can perform safely and effortlessly. You can perform the exercise steps with him to keep his muscles strong and relieve stress.
- A number of studies have highlighted that a significant percentage children with cerebral palsy are malnourished. Many parents even find it daunting to feed such kids. You can always avail the services of a speech therapist to strengthen the child’s mouth muscles and make him use his tongue frequently. If there is no improvement, you have to feed him liquid food by inserting a gastrostomy feeding tube (G-tube). You have to invest additional time and effort to prevent your child from becoming malnourished.
However, the parents cannot adopt a single approach to manage a child with cerebral palsy more efficiently. They must make a cerebral palsy plan based on the child’s age, strengths, weaknesses, preferences and symptoms. Also, they must consult an orthopedic on a regular basis to make the child feel comfortable and happy.