Gross Motor Delay
As children develop and grow they learn an astounding number of new skills at an amazing rate such as sitting up unaided, crawling, talking and taking those all important first steps. These new abilities are known as developmental milestones and just as there is natural variation in the ability and talents of children there is also a large amount of variation in the age at which each developmental milestone will be achieved. Gross motor skills refer to the ability to use large muscle groups to perform activities such as sitting up, crawling and walking. Sometimes children are slower reaching these gross motor milestones, most of the time this is perfectly normal and they will catch up with their peers. Some children however will consistently fail to achieve their gross motor milestones and these children will have what is known as gross motor delay. These difficulties in reaching gross motor milestones will often be picked up by the health visitor who will have referred the child on to a paediatrician or child development centre. For children who have been identified as having gross motor developmental delay physiotherapy can play a key role in helping these children to improve and also to enable parents to understand how best to help their children. We are based in Lichfield and offer a paediatric physiotherapy service to help with gross motor delay in surrounding areas such as Sutton Coldfield, Tamworth, Rugeley, Cannock and Walsall.
How can ThreeSpires Physiotherapy help?
Our specialist, paediatric physiotherapist has a large amount of experience in working with children with gross motor delay of all ages from 3 months upwards and will be able to assist you and your child in improving their movements and understanding how best to proceed. After arranging an appointment the physiotherapist will visit you at home to conduct the first session with your child.
In general we would recommend that this initial assessment is conducted at home for a variety of reasons: firstly to ensure your child is relaxed and does not have the added stress of going into a clinic environment which can often make them alter their behaviour and give a false impression of their abilities. Secondly by being at home this allow a thorough discussion and enables you to talk over any concerns that you may have and finally it lets the physiotherapist see how therapy will be able to be conducted at home. Follow up sessions may be at home, school or nursery as required. Following is a description of a typical initial assessment:
Subjective History - this initial part consists of a discussion between you, your physiotherapist and possibly (depending on age) your child. This part will cover medical history, current problems, goals and anything that may be important to you.
Objective - this is a detailed physical examination by the physiotherapist who will look at your child's overall physical capabilities. Depending on age this may involve looking at their rolling, crawling or ability to sit unaided. Our paediatric physiotherapist will ensure that this a fun and relaxed process and to the untrained eye it may appear to simply be play. By making it fun and engaging your child will enjoy the process and will also gain much more from therapy.
Treatment - during each session the physiotherapist will help your child practice key movements, work on strengthening muscles such as the back muscles which help children sit up and help improve balance. . Your physiotherapist will also discuss and demonstrate ways in which you can help with rehabilitation and exercises at home.
At the conclusion of the initial assessment your physiotherapist will talk over how best to move forward and will cover an overall plan in terms of number of sessions needed, how often sessions should be, what it is important to work on and initial goals for physiotherapy.
They will also discuss where it is best to conduct each session, generally some sessions will be at home and some will be at school or nursery. Your physiotherapist (with your permission) will be able to liaise with school, nursery, the GP and any other staff involved in the care of your child and can provide a report if required.