Thursday, September 24, 2009

Adam's physical therapy results

Adam's physical therapist visited our house yesterday for a follow up appointment to evaluate his development. We were pleased to see it was the same person who conducted the initial appointment. Shannon thought it might be a good idea to even have her assess him a third time in December before he starts at Easter Seals. This would provide a comparison of a consistent assessment vs. introductory assessment by Easter Seals. We will get her opinion on that.

In a nutshell, she thought Adam looked great. If you remember, she had 2 main concerns at her last evaluation. The first was the torticollis on his right side, which means he had a significant flat spot on the side of his head. This was probably due to his reflux issues earlier on and turning his head away from the location of his stomach. Our assignment was to get him to lay on his left side instead, which was difficult at times and we had to prop a rolled receiving blanket behind him to help with that.

Fabulous news - she said the shape of his head looks great and if she didn't already know he had an issue, she wouldn't have guessed.

Her second concern was the weakness on the left side of his neck, which was partially related to the torticollis. Previously he was not able to turn his head from side to side on either his back or stomach. Our assignment was to have floor/tummy time to encourage him to turn his head to the weak side. We also let him have tummy time looking to the left to stretch those muscles and strengthen them.

Again, her evaluation revealed no further concerns.

She also tested his ability to sit up, grasp items, stand, push up while on his tummy, turn his head toward the direction of sounds, and whether his "walk" reflex was developing. In all of these areas, he was rated in the 2-3 month age - right on track. As we talked about Adam's leg strength with standing, she wants to make sure Easter Seals differentiates strength vs. tone. It isn't good if he is always stiff-legged so we should look for him to flex his legs and use them in different ways.

Our next assignment with Adam is to continue giving him time on his tummy to work on his upper body strength. And time on his back to encourage him to reach up (to midline) for toys. As adults, it is a very easy task to lay on our backs and reach up for something. But for a baby, gravity works against them and it is actually quite the challenge.

Healthy boy!

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