Charity organisation L.I.V.E. raised through their own fundsraising efforts recently an incredible 600 euros towards one of the many treatments that Tomas receives. We received this generous donation from the President of L.I.V.E. Keith Spitalnick and we could not thank him enough and are very grateful to him and his colleagues at L.I.V.E for giving us another lifeline with our continual treatments. The treatment consists of physiotherapy on a one to one basis. The main phyiotherapist is Susan Jimenez who has her own physiotherapy and rehabilition centre.
Physiotherapy is used to help cerebral palsy patients improve movement and motor skills. Since cerebral palsy is a physical and movement disorder that impairs the brain’s ability to properly control muscle movement, physiotherapy can do wonders in helping cerebral palsy patients gain mobility. Cerebral palsy physiotherapy techniques are determined by the degree of physical limitations of the individual and what will be most beneficial to the cerebral palsy patient.
Physiotherapy generally consists of a few types of therapy and helps a cerebral palsy patient to improve their gross motor skills. Motor skills that utilize the large muscles in the body, such as those in the arms and legs, are known as gross motor skills. This kind of physiotherapy can help improve a cerebral palsy patient’s balance and movement.
Physiotherapy can be great for increasing the success of learning to walk, standing without aid, using a wheelchair or other adaptive equipment and other movement skills. The physical therapists involved in physiotherapy reduce further development of musculoskeletal problems by preventing muscle weakening, deterioration and contracture through the correct physiotherapy techniques.
Occupational therapy is another element of physiotherapy used for cerebral palsy patients and it is used for aiding in the development of fine motor skills. Fine motor skills focus on the use of smaller muscles, such as those in the face, fingers, toes, hands and feet. Fine motor skills are used during daily living skills like eating, dressing, writing, etc., and are fine tuned by occupational physiotherapy.
It is vital that children with cerebral palsy have regular physiotherapy from an early age and that regular physiotherapy sessions are continued as they grow.
Following advice from our pediatrician, Tomas has been having such physiotherapy sessions since he was six months old. When Tomas was younger, he had scoliosis (curvature of the spine), his hand were clenched, his neck and head were floppy with little control, his leg and arm muscles were weak and his leg tendons were tight causing bad foot positioning. Due to all these problems he had severe difficulty sitting up, using his arms and hands and he could not balance, stand or walk.
Over the past five years Tomas has made slow but steady progress in all of the above areas and this has made a huge difference to his quality of life and his general medical health. As you will see from the videos above, the progress we have seen in his both his physical abilities and his confidence has been nothing short of a miracle. In his first few years he was given little hope of recovery, but with the continued focus on regular therapy sessions and a lot of patience and determination, he has made some emotional and amazing breakthroughs.
His physiotherapy is an integral part of his overall weekly treatment. It provides us with confidence that, whatever the future may hold, we are doing all we can to ensure that Tomas is able to acheive his full potential.