Cerebral Palsy

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Aenean commodo ligula eget dolor. Aenean massa. Cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus.

What to expect

Cerebral Palsy

What is cerebral palsy?

Cerebral palsy is multiple disorders which affect body movement, balance, coordination and posture.

Cerebral palsy is the abnormality or damage to parts of the brain which control motor activity and muscle tone. The damage to the brain will occur either before, during or shortly after birth.

Speech and language therapy helps children with cerebral palsy by helping and supporting any speech, language, communication and swallowing difficulties they may have.

Types of cerebral palsy

There are three main types of cerebral palsy which include:

Spastic cerebral palsy

Spastic cerebral palsy is characterised by increased muscle tone affecting the flexibility and the range of movement of the joints.

Athetoid cerebral palsy

Athetoid cerebral palsy is characterised by writhing, slow movements which most commonly affects the legs, feet, hands and arms.

Ataxic cerebral palsy

Ataxic cerebral palsy is characterised by reduced co-ordination of movement and low muscle tone which affects the trunk and all four limbs.

What are the signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy?

The signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy will affect each child in different ways. Signs and symptoms may be present immediately from birth or appear some monhs after birth.

Symptoms can vary from mild to severe. Signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy can include:

  • Communication problems
  • Language delay and impairment
  • Eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties
  • Learning difficulties
  • Hearing loss and impairments
  • Difficulty with walking
  • Problems with balance and coordination
  • Difficulty controlling and maintaining posture
  • Epilepsy
  • Visual difficulties

What problems caused by cerebral palsy can speech and language therapy help with?

Speech and language therapy can help with any speech, language, communication and / eating and drinking difficulties experienced by a child with cerebral palsy. Common problems which speech and language therapy can help with include:

  • Eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties
  • Speech disorders
  • Learning difficulties
  • Communication problems
  • Language delay
  • Physical disabilities

What causes cerebral palsy?

The exact cause of cerebral palsy is often unknown. Causes of cerebral palsy can include:

  • Oxygen starvation to the brain
  • Infection in the early stages of pregnancy
  • Premature or multiple birth
  • Difficult birth
  • Abnormal brain development
  • A cerebral (brain) bleed

How is cerebral palsy diagnosed?

A diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy will be made by a team of medical professionals. The diagnosis will be made by reviewing the child's medical history and performing a physical examination, examining the child's motor skills, posture, reflexes and muscle tone.

The speech and language therapist will contribute to the diagnostic process by assessing if the baby / child has any speech, language, communication and / eating and drinking problems.

How does speech and language therapy help cerebral palsy?

Speech and language therapy can help a child with cerebral palsy by improving and developing their speech, language and communication skills.

During the first year of life it has been estimated that 57% of all children with Cerebral Palsy have difficulty with sucking, 33% with malnutrition and 38% with swallowing. The speech and language therapist can help with any eating, drinking or swallowing difficulties the child may have.

At speech and language therapy an initial assessment will highlight any difficulties your child may be having with speech development, communication, eating, drinking or swallowing. The speech and language therapist will then create an individualised treatment plan for your child.

What would speech and language therapy treatment for a child with cerebral palsy involve?

For a child with cerebral palsy speech and language therapy can involve a variety of treatment options. The type of treatment given will vary depending on the specific difficulties the child is having regarding their speech, language, communication and / eating and drinking needs.

Types of treatment can include:

    Helping the child to develop increased control of their muscles of speech which will help to improve both their speech and also eating and drinking. Alternative and Augmentative communication for children who are unable, or have limited ability to speak. Individual therapy programme for the child's speech and to increase their intelligibility (how well we are understood by others). Therapy for their expressive and receptive language. Advice, support and a feeding programme for the child's eating, drinking and swallowing. Treatment will also include some or all of the following: assessments reports one to one therapy clinic visits home visits review groups training consultative role alternative and augmentative communication advice and education Speech and language therapy treatment can be provided in a location to suit your needs which includes; home visits, school visits and clinic visits. This variety of settings enables us to have a better overview of your child's requirements throughout their day, and provide the most effective treatment. Our dedicated, specialised staff can maximise your child's potential by working closely with families, carers and teachers. How do I arrange a speech and language therapy assessment? To arrange an assessment with one our speech and language therapists please email office@slt.co.uk or call 0330 0885 643. Summary Cerebral palsy is a group of disorders that affect body movement, balance, coordination and posture. At SLT we offer you and your child specialist speech and language therapy advice to help identify and treat a variety of problems associated with cerebral palsy. If you would like any more information on our speech and language therapy services, or would like to book an assessment with one of our speech and language therapists please email office@slt.co.uk or call 0330 0885 643.

    Back to top ↑

    Next steps

    To speak to a Speech and Language Therapist or to book an appointment, call us on 0161 883 0111 or email office@slt.co.uk

    Follow

    Follow us on social media

We're registered

All our speech and language therapists are registered with the RCSLT and the HCPC

Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists Logo HCPC Logo

Say hello...

We are always happy to answer any questions you might have. You can contact us in the following ways:

We work with...

slt.co.uk © 2018
Powered by Nuttersons