A healthy child is all that parents wish for their babies to be when they’re born, which is why it is all the more painful once they find out that this is not the case. Cerebral palsy is a condition is especially difficult because it affects one’s motor disability.
At a time in their lives when children are supposed to be crawling and running around, exploring the world with bright, fresh eyes, they are instead limited and at higher risk of suffering from further health complications.
Diagnosing Cerebral Palsy
Cerebral Palsy is caused by damage to the parts of the brain controlling movement. There are several possible explanations for this, including a reduced blood or oxygen supply in the brain during its development.
It’s also possible for the condition to develop as a result of injury during or shortly after birth, such as in cases of asphyxiation.
The immediate challenge of dealing with cerebral palsy is its diagnosis. Because babies still have yet to fully develop their motor skills anyway, it may be difficult to notice any impairments to their movements.
Your child’s doctor may see some early signs and immediately ask for further evaluation and assessment. Among these symptoms are tremors or involuntary twitching in muscle movements, rigidity in muscles, inconsistent muscle tones (some parts are stiff, while others are limp), spastic muscle movement, and more.
MRI, CT scans, EEG, and various laboratory tests are going to be requested by the doctor, so you can expect a lot of doctor’s appointments once the process starts. Additional tests may also be required, such as for the child’s vision, speech, hearing, and intelligence.
Dealing with the Diagnosis
Once it is confirmed that your child has cerebral palsy, it is crucial that you educate yourself as much as you can about the condition. This way, you can be better equipped in your new role as a caregiver for a child with cerebral palsy.
Without a doubt, it is one of the most challenging things any parent can go through, which is why finding a reliable support system is crucial. Unfortunately, cerebral palsy is pretty common, with a rate of 1 to 4 cases for every 1,000 live births. What this means for you, however, is that there are definitely more parents out there who can relate to your experience. Having somebody else to listen and understand can already go a long way in giving you the strength and resolve to handle the situation.
There are also different organizations that can help with the financial costs of cerebral palsy care. Because the child will need special care, on top of the medications and tests they need to undergo, cerebral palsy turns out to be one very expensive condition. A cerebral palsy guide listing down organizations that support causes related to cerebral palsy should help.