Taken from “Cerebral Palsy: A Complete Guide for Caregiving” by Freeman Miller, M.D. and Steven J. Bachrach, M.D. pg. 450
Physical therapy, occupational therapy.
The goal of any therapy is to maximize each child’s functioning to all that it can be. Therapy may be performed by many people, including parents, grandparents, school teachers, and even the child himself or herself. The professional therapists most often encountered are physical, occupational and speech therapists, who are trained and licensed practitioners under whose expertise the therapy is directed or personally given.
Physical and occupational therapists’ approach overlap because their focus is to help the child develop motor skills. Areas in common include seating assessments, early intervention therapy and developmental testing. Physical therapists, however, focus mainly on gross motor or large muscle activities involving the legs, such as walking, bracing, using crutches and rehabilitation after surgery. Occupational therapists focus primarily on fine motor activities involving the upper extremities, and functions such as feeding, writing and using scissors; they also splint the arm as necessary. As the child grows older, occupational therapists stress activities of daily living such as self-dressing, bathing, and preparing food.
In choosing a specific physical or occupational therapist, it is usually best to find one who is trained and experienced in dealing with children with developmental problems.
Here is a summary of the things that Yasin is doing now during his joint occupational and physical therapy sessions:
• Strengthening muscles
• Using right side and left side
• Stretching muscles
• Shifting weight – backwards and forwards and side to side
• Arm strength – weight-bearing with straight elbows and flat hands