Caring for a growing child with cerebral palsy can be difficult, and it's important to always consult with your child's doctor before trying anything new. With that said, there are a number of things that you as a parent can do to help improve your child's quality of life and help them live with this difficult condition. Below are four things to keep in mind:
Learn as Much as Possible
When you are the primary caregiver for someone suffering from a neurological disorder, education is key. Children suffering from cerebral palsy have a number of specific needs and you will only be able to provide proper care if you are educated on the topic yourself. This means more than doing a bit of research online; rather, consult with your child's doctor about what resources are available to help you give your child the care they need.
Your child's doctor may be able to give you details of local classes with other parents caring for their children. Support networks are key and working together with parents in a similar situation to yours will only help to educate you about this difficult condition. As such, speak to your local healthcare provider about what resources are available and if they can recommend any good classes or networks.
Look at Modern Technology
To give your child the best care possible, you should try to stay up to date with current research and technological developments. There are a wide range of modern products that are available to help your child, such as:
- Adaptive Tricycles: These novel tricycles are used for therapeutic purposes, but can also help improve your child's respiration and swallowing.
- Car Seats: There are a number of different car seats available on the market to keep your child as comfortable as possible when traveling.
- Bath Chairs: It's important to give your child as much autonomy as possible and allowing them to use the toilet and bathe themselves will only help empower them.
As modern technology advances, more and more assisted living products are invented that will only help alleviate your child's discomfort and give them more autonomy in their life. As such, try and keep an eye out for new developments that can help your child.
Consider Alternative Methods of Therapy
In addition to regular medical care and physiotherapy, you should look at other ways you can improve your child's well-being and their ability to cope with cerebral palsy. There are a number of different things you can do to with your child that can help them improve their condition whilst having fun.
One such form of therapy is known as aqua therapy, which is when you exercise with your child in a swimming pool. This is great for the child as it reduces pressure on their bones and joints whilst allowing them to strengthen their muscles by swimming. Because of the buoyancy force experienced in water, your child will be able to exercise without as much resistance as they would experience on land. This means that they will be better able to improve their cardiac health and overall muscle tone by exercising in water.
Look After Yourself
As the primary caregiver for your child, it's understandable that you will want to focus all of your attention on them in order to help improve their quality of life. However, it's vitally important that you look after yourself so that you can really focus your energies on helping your child.
This means taking time out to look after yourself and ensure that you are healthy in both body and mind. You should ask family members and healthcare providers for help in caring for your child so that you can take some time out to refocus your energies. This may be difficult at first, but you can only look after your child if you are in a good frame of mind, so make sure you give yourself a break every now and then.
To learn more, reach out to resources like Mohsen M. Hamza, M.D.Share