What is paediatric physiotherapy anyway?

When meeting new people, as soon as they find out that I’m a physiotherapist, the assumption is that my 9-5 involves massaging, stretching, and taping up men and women for their next *insert crazy competitive sport here*.

When I say that I’m actually a paediatric physiotherapist, I hear crickets – or get asked:

“So… you massage babies?”

Admittedly – sometimes. But physiotherapy is really much more than that.

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What does a paediatric physiotherapist do?

Paediatric physiotherapy is physiotherapy for babies, children, and teenagers. From birth right up until they’re too cool to come to me in my paediatric therapy room.

We look at how a child moves and find strategies that work to help them engage with their environment. Sometimes, that’s teaching them a new skill like learning how to reach, roll, crawl or walk.

Sometimes that’s strengthening weak muscles in their arms and core so that they can master the monkey bars or their skills for big school.

Other times, it’s managing pain and muscle tone to help a child move optimally.

It depends on the diagnosis, the age and the needs of the child which we carefully assess and evaluate with the help of mom and dad, teachers and other health care professionals.

What conditions do you treat?

Here’s a long (but not complete) list:

  • Developmental delay
  • Low muscle tone
  • Hypermobility
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Brain injuries
  • Down’s syndrome
  • Spina bifida
  • Aches and pains
  • Concentration issues/ADHD
  • Fractures
  • Torticollis
  • Plagiocephaly
  • Others

I’m a firm believer that everyone could benefit from having a physio in their lives – if nothing else, because the majority of us are just great fun to be around.

As first line practitioners, you don’t need a referral to come and see us – all you need to do is give us a call. If you’re not sure if we can help you – just ask and we can always point you in the right direction.

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