williams syndrome

What is Williams Syndrome?

CME WebsitesChild Development, Parenting a Child with Special Needs

Having been lucky enough to grow up with a family member with Williams Syndrome, it’s almost difficult for me to describe the diagnosis when asked what it exactly it is. My cousin’s diagnosis, although more defined in our adult age, was never a concern, topic of conversation, or even differentiation for me while we were growing up. When I picture …

children's orthotics

Children’s Orthotics for Flat Feet

CME WebsitesChild Development, Special Needs Diagnoses

As a physical therapist, I receive questions surrounding orthotics quite frequently.  Parents and caregivers may have heard from other parents about his or her child wearing orthotics for “flat feet.”  Some physicians might recommend orthotics, while others believe the child will “grow out of it.” Consider the following questions and discuss them with your physical therapist prior to pursuing any …

Cleft Lip, Cleft Palate & Submucous Cleft

Emily FawcettChild Development, Special Needs Diagnoses

Occurring in 1 in every 600 births, clefts are one of the most common birth defects in the US.  Clefts form early on in pregnancy (between 4-8 weeks after conception) when the facial prominences (group of cells) are fusing together. Three common types of clefts are as follows: (1) Cleft Lip is when the tissues of the upper lip have …

adaptive devices for seating

Adaptive Devices: Chairs and Seating

CME WebsitesChild Development, Parenting a Child with Special Needs

Kids naturally like and need to move around to explore their environment and socialize with family and other children. Mobility is an important milestone for our children to reach and parents look forward to this stage in development. But the importance of sitting should not be overlooked.  Children need to sit to initially work on their fine motor skills and …

Plagiocephaly or flat head syndrome

My Child Has a Flat Head. Does My Child Need a Helmet? | Plagiocephaly

CME WebsitesChild Development, Resources, Special Needs Diagnoses, Therapy Options

As a physical therapist, I encounter this question quite often when treating infants.  I also receive questions such as, “If we do our physical therapy, will the flatness improve?” and “If this were your child, what would you do?” When a physical therapist first evaluates your child, he/she may look at several things, including: Location of the flat spot (or …

hearing loss in children

Testing for Hearing Loss in Children

Maureen O'BrienChild Development, Special Needs Diagnoses

Hearing loss in children can cause delays in speech and language as well as academic skills later in childhood. Early intervention speech language pathologists work with many families of young children with speech and language delays. These families are often concerned that their child may have a hearing loss or that the child does not hear properly due to constant …

sensory issues or temperament

Child Behaviors: Are They Due to Sensory Issues or Temperament?

CME WebsitesBehavior, Child Development, Expected Behavior by Age

As a mother, therapist, friend, and neighbor, I hear people say all the time, “Oh he/she is the best baby…he/she never cries, fusses, puts anything in his/her mouth, and can sleep through a train driving through our house.” Or I may hear the opposite, “He/she will only sleep if it is totally silent, cries all the time, and never seems …

late talking toddlers

Helpful Strategies for Apraxia of Speech or Late Talking Toddlers

Rinda GraybillBehavior, Child Development, Expected Behavior by Age

In our previous article, Childhood Apraxia of Speech, we discussed some characteristics of suspected apraxia of speech in toddlers.  To redefine childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), it is a motor speech disorder.  A child who has CAS will have difficulty planning motor movements for speech production.  So, what does this mean?  A child with CAS will often know what they …

benefits of crawling

Benefits of Crawling

CME WebsitesChild Development, Crawling

The crawling stage of a child’s development has many benefits. These include increasing core musculature, overall strength and balance, and coordination in the upper and lower extremities. 1 Crawling allows a child to learn about where their body is in space, and how to navigate around obstacles so they can explore and play in their environment.2 It has also been …