Treating Kids with Physical Therapy

Dave Sefton, physical therapist and team leader at our Cedar Springs clinic, works with two very sweet, young sisters

“One of my daughters has special needs and we’ve had a few therapy treatments in the past that didn’t go well. Not long after starting at Northern we saw tremendous growth in both girls. You made my daughters feel like part of your family and for the first time they looked forward to therapy. Persephone has microcephaly and hypoplasia of the cerebellum, both of which are neurological impairments that she has had from birth. We’ve seen her gain more in the last 6 months than in the last couple years. She is stronger, more stable, more aware of the world around her, and we’ve seen an increase in her independence. Serenity, who has neurological impairments that effect her balance and coordination was born with neurofibromatosis. Throughout her therapy we’ve seen her gain self esteem. Your commitment to my children and willingness to listen has made a huge impact. David and Anna always went the extra mile. The girls are sad they’re being discharged because they’ve had such a great experience.”

Marissa, mother of two daughters who received physical therapy at our Cedar Springs clinicThat story couldn’t make us happier. We were thrilled to have the opportunity to help these two sweet girls and to hear their mother discuss such immense progress was the absolute best outcome we could have hoped for.

Helping Kids Grow – Physically and Mentally
It’s never easy to see your child in pain. Whether they’ve had an accident, an injury on the field, trouble keeping up with their peers on the playground or playing field, or are having trouble with fine motor skills, you want to do everything you can to protect them and keep them safe. Physical therapy can help kids feel better and improve their athletic performance, and even their age appropriate skills. When we treat kids and teens we try to make the experience fun so they like coming in to see us and they want to do their exercises and get back to feeling good again. In the process we always educate families on how to keep their kids safe, while still allowing them to have fun and do the things that kids do.

What are the most common injuries we see in kids?
In younger kids, we often see them after sprains and strains, broken bones, and what we might commonly call growing pains or muscle imbalances. Sometimes kids struggle with fine motor challenges in school like cutting paper and handwriting, and our team works with those kids. In teens we get into concussions, sprains and strains from playing sports, and back and shoulder pain due to poor posture. We see a lot more of this due to texting and gaming.

Back Pain in Kids
We actually see a lot of kids that are suffering from back pain and believe it or not, sometimes we can trace that back to an ill fitting backpack. We offer free backpack fitting assessments at our 6 of our locations, all you have to do is stop by with your child and their backpack and we’ll get them all set. A few things to look for when fitting your child for the backpack include:
– Adjusting the shoulder straps so the pack fits snuggly on the child’s back
– Checking where the pack rests on your child’s back
– Does the pack have a waist belt? This can be used to distribute the weight more evenly

When you’re looking for a compassionate, knowledgeable team to care for your kiddos, look no further than Northern. Our experienced therapists, youth summer camps, and athletic training programs – all geared towards kids – are designed especially with young ones in mind. Let us help your kids grow!
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