Infants and young children may experience developmental delay due to a number of factors. Our therapists are experts at developmental evaluations and establishing plans of care customized to each patient's needs. Each plan is unique to the individual and is based on patient and family centered goals.
TORTICOLLIS & PLAGIOCEPHALY
Torticollis is a condition of the neck in which the child’s head tilts toward one shoulder and often the chin rotates toward the opposite shoulder. It occurs when muscles in the child’s neck, most often the Sternocleidomastoid (SCM), is tight. This postural condition may impact postural alignment of the entire body. Whether just the neck or the entire body is affected, it can affect the way baby learns new motor skills. Physical therapy plays an important role in individualized treatment of torticollis, including stretching, strengthening, motor skill development, myofascial release, visual motor development, and overall postural symmetry. Torticollis should be treated by a skilled professional who provides manual therapy interventions to address the restrictions and follows up with neuromuscular re-education to promote progression of motor patterns with good postural alignment. The sooner baby starts Physical therapy, the greater opportunity for improvement.
Torticollis is often accompanied by flatness on the head. 1 in 10 babies present with "Flat Head Syndrome" or medically termed Plagiocephaly. "Physical therapy is recommended over repositioning education alone for reducing prevalence of infantile positional plagiocephaly in infants," according to The Congress of Neurological Surgeons, (Flannery, A.M. et al, Summary: Evidence Based Guidelines for the treatment of pediatric positional plagiocephaly). Earlier physical therapy intervention renders optimal results, faster. Helmet therapy is recommended after conservative management (physical therapy) or in more extreme cases.
PREMATURITY DEVELOPMENTAL CARE
You've graduated from the NICU, now what? Many babies born either preterm or term with medical conditions requiring admission to the NICU will benefit from follow-up physical therapy services for sensory integration, developmental skill progression, positioning, and even head shaping initiatives.
PEDIATRIC LYMPHEDEMA, COMPLETE DECONGESTIVE THERAPY
Complete Decongestive Therapy initiatives available including manual lymph drainage, compression wrapping and custom compression management, decongestive exercise, skin care, and long term follow up. Catherine is a certified lymphedema therapist (CLT) through the Academy of Lymphatic Studies, 2015. She utilizes Complete Decongestive Therapy initiatives to treat patients with congenital lymphedema and other vascular conditions that lend to swelling of the extremities and/or trunk. This service is available to patients of all ages.
ACUTE OR POST SURGICAL REHAB
Surgery often has life-saving benefits for many babies but may also impact a baby's opportunity to achieve motor milestones in a typical manner. Many babies with surgical intervention will have "sternal precautions" for 6-8 weeks, per surgeons recommendations. These sternal precautions are essential to recovery but often have developmental implications. We can address these developmental concerns and facilitate progress to age appropriate motor skills while incorporating post-operative recovery principles.
Catherine has expertise in cardiopulmonary rehab, utilizing principles of physical therapy to optimize respiratory function so that patients can do what they do best, play! Breathing is an essential function of life and our babies must breathe efficiently to do just about everything - sleep, eat, crawl, and play. Catherine is experienced in treating patients with inefficient respiratory mechanics associated with various pulmonary conditions, including post-surgical intervention.
Multidisciplinary services are on the horizon for PhysioBaby. We can't wait to introduce our newest specialty provider!
MANUAL THERAPY AND MYOFASCIAL RELEASE
Infant manual therapy and myofascial release can be beneficial for promoting alignment, circulation, aiding digestion, reducing pain, and reducing muscular restrictions. Infant manual therapy also promotes relaxation and often improves nursing/feeding. The delicate sensory and muscular systems of an infant require expert, gentle touch. A therapist can provide infant manual therapy and also teach you in the healing power of massage for your baby.
Many babies presenting with tongue and/or lip tie, ankyloglossia, will benefit from gentle myofascial release, ankyloglossia bodywork, throughout the body in order to improve latch, postural control for feeding, and general motor control for eating efficiency.
GROSS MOTOR PLAY
You can have a positive impact on your baby’s motor skill development, posture, and head shape. Typical infant development occurs when babies are provided opportunities to learn new skills. These opportunities can be incorporated into the way you hold and carry your baby, feed your baby, and spend playtime with your baby - purposeful play! You are already doing these things, but could you tweak it just a bit to give your baby even better opportunities to progress their motor skills?
We provide individual and group wellness sessions from birth to toddler age where we discuss age appropriate motor skills and strategies to help baby learn and develop new skills. Practitioner will use expertise of typically developing infants and young children to guide you in optimal positioning for play and developmental progression.
Please contact us to schedule your private or group session or learn more about scheduled group developmental wellness sessions. Feel good about the opportunities you are providing your baby and let's get together and play with purpose!