It is common to think of Physiotherapy as something only required by professional athletes or the elderly. When you imagine a physio you will probably have images of someone being massaged pitch side or struggling to learn to walk again after a severe accident, injury or illness. However, physiotherapy is crucial in the treatment of children and you may be surprised by all the different ways physiotherapy could help your child.
Here are ‘6 signs your child may need physiotherapy’, and if you relate to even just one, you might want to consider how you can help your child’s body grow and heal in the right way:
Pain that won’t go away – Often dismissed by many health care professionals as “growing pains”. If your child is suffering from joint or muscle pain, often worse at night or after activity then there’s no reason to suffer in silence. Often pain comes and goes so it is easy to ignore initially but if your child has been complaining of the same pain for a while, it may be time to ask a physio to assess your child. A children’s physio can assess your child’s joints and muscles and will often find a treatable reason for this pain and teach you and your child how to change their body and fitness to reduce the pain.
Balance and coordination – Would you describe your child as “accident prone “or “clumsy”? Are you constantly receiving calls from school about your child falling over in the playground? You are not alone; many children have poor balance and coordination and as a result frequently fall over. Children’s physio can retrain your child’s body to move without falling over. Poor balance can be caused by a multitude of underlying issues, not only can a physio can work out what the root of the problem is they can also challenge the body and improve specific muscle strength to help you tackle this issue. No more grazed knees, torn trousers and holes in tights!!!
Reduced stamina and fatigue – Ever thought your child was unusually tired after the school day? Have you noticed they find it hard to keep up with the rest of the family on family days out? Even when doing fun activities that you know they enjoy such as birthday parties and trips to the theme park do you notice that your child is struggling to take part? Tiredness and fatigue are a common complaint of many children, but not something that has to start limiting your child’s function. If tiredness becomes an issue for your child a children’s physio can help address the issue and teach you and your child ways of managing fatigue and gradually increase fitness and stamina to help them live a full and active lifestyle.
Unexplained pain in other areas – Sometimes the point of injury is not the point of pain. Your child might have initially injured or had some weakness in one part of their body, only to find that a different part of them suffers, or becomes susceptible to pain and lack of mobility. Sometimes pain can occur without any original injury whatsoever. If your child has pain in their body that cannot be attributed to a specific incident or accident, it is worth seeking a children’s physio to assess for any imbalances and discrepancies in the muscles and movements of your child’s body and advise on how best to move forward.
Disturbed sleep – If your child is struggling to sleep through the night, waking up in pain or complaining of restless legs then you’ll know how significantly a lack of sleep can affect your child. A lack of sleep can often be a result of that discomfort. Sleep patterns are a good indicator of what is going on inside your child’s body. If your child has problems getting to sleep, suffers with restless nights, or simply does not wake up feeling fully rested, one cause could be pain and mobility problems. Seek an assessment from a children’s physio to make sure the discomfort isn’t being caused by something you can easily treat, if shown how.
Delayed milestones – Is your child struggling to master rolling from front to back, are you finding it frustrating that other children in play groups are up and cruising whilst your child is only just sitting. A children’s physio is an expert in the development and movement of children. They are highly skilled in teaching you and your child subtle ways to strengthen and progress their movement patterns so that any delay in development is corrected and your child can reach its milestones with their peers. That way your child won’t only develop physically but they also won’t miss out on all the social development and fun with other children their age whilst trying to catch up.
Do you want to find out more about what children’s physiotherapy can do for you and your child? If you can relate to any of the above points you won’t regret seeking some advice from the professionals to help your child live a full, happy and healthy life.