What is pediatric physiotherapy?
Pediatric Physiotherapy is the assessment and treatment of children with developmental, neurological and growth related conditions. It takes into consideration the unique needs, anatomy and biomechanics of children from birth until full growth and development has occurred.
The goal of pediatric physiotherapy is to facilitate participation, development and independence in life taking into consideration the unique, ever-changing needs of the growing baby, child and adolescent.
Why see a pediatric physiotherapist?
Pediatric physiotherapists have a clear understanding and knowledge base of pediatric conditions and illnesses, growth related conditions and developmental stages and milestones. They are aware of primitive reflex patterns seen in babies and young children and can identify abnormalities in growth, posture, alignment and development. Pediatric physiotherapists are also specialists in growth-related conditions and injuries that present in pre-teen and adolescents.
Pediatric physiotherapists work with children with many conditions, including but not limited to:
Growth related disorders such as Osgood-Schlatter’s Disease, Sever’s Disease and Little League Elbow
Kids Sports Injuries / Trauma / Overuse injuries
Gross Motor and Developmental Delay
Head Shape Concerns (Plagiocephaly)
Tip-toe Walking / In-toeing Gait / Bowed Legs
Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis
What is different about pediatric treatment?
Treatment for children with neurological or developmental conditions is aimed at maximizing potential and facilitating development, participation and independence. This may be aimed at reaching specific milestones such as rolling, crawling and walking. Treatment is individualized; depending on the unique needs of each child and Family, and may vary from hands-on treatment to advice, education, exercise prescription and consultation. Management is family-centered, with the goal of supporting and empowering both the child and their families at home, school and in the community, and not just in the treatment room. Assessment and treatment with younger children is play-based in order to engage and motivate children and achieve results. Older children, adolescents and caregivers are encouraged to participate in identifying goals and formulating an effective treatment plan that will work for their unique situation.
Pediatric physiotherapy is the right option for your child if they are experiencing problems, pain or gross motor challenges related to growth and/or development.