Physiotherapy for kids & teens

What is it?

Physiotherapy is an often overlooked way of treating a very vast range of problems that medical medicine can’t deal with. Youths, in particular, have a lot to gain from being treated of ailments while still in development. This may prevent the condition from worsening as they age and make the treatment easier since their still flexible enough in both body and mind to easily integrate lifestyle changes. Regular medicine has a strong focus on “periodic” interventions through medication or in worst case scenarios, surgery; whereas physiotherapy is a type of medium to long term treatment that doesn’t use invasive methods to treat a variety of conditions that primarily concern the muscles, bones, and movement patterns of an individual. Physiotherapy is not an alternative medical practice but a science-based school of medicine that focuses on rehabilitation and treatment of physical conditions through awareness, education, empowerment of the body, and lifestyle changes.

How can children benefit from physiotherapy?

Since children are still in a stage of life where they’re adapting to their bodies and reality, youth is a perfect chance to correct any problems they will have before they become aggravated with time. Here’s an example: Some families have hereditary bad posture, which can lead to several complications later in life like chronic back pain, problems sleeping, and in worst case carpal tunnel syndrome. This can be treated later in life, but requires much more time and effort and isn’t always successful, and some symptoms may be more difficult to get rid of; but children have an incredibly easy time changing their postures and their gait, easily avoiding all the trouble and pain that would have occurred later in their lives as the condition gradually worsened. Another thing children can benefit from greatly is being educated on what’s healthy for the body, small things like healthy sleeping postures, the correct way to lift something heavy, and other small things that on their own aren’t particularly damaging but through years of repetition can cause damage to the body. Any child with physical disabilities also has much to gain, for example children with cerebral palsy, down syndrome, muscular dystrophy, and other conditions can gain a lot of independence from the treatment in the form of increased coordination, muscle strengthening, and balance.

How does the treatment work?

Physical therapy implements a variety of methods to accomplish its goals, the majority of them involve using the body and in some cases instruments to achieve the desired effects. Techniques such an using exercise balls to work on musculature and balance, or using elastic bands to strengthen muscles and improve dexterity are commonly used to treat a variety of symptoms. Treatment is administered in sessions up to one hour, and with a minimum frequency of twice a week. Treatment can last from as little as 4 sessions up to several months or years depending on the nature of the condition or disability being treated.

In summary…

When administered during youth physical therapy teachings can be easily assimilated into a child or teen’s life and greatly reduce the amount of difficulties or symptoms they would otherwise experience later in their lives. When used preventatively physiotherapy can cause ailments which are just beginning to surface to remain that way or disappear entirely, rather than allow them to become aggravated by time and bad habits.