Paediatric Physiotherapy can support your family to live your best active life.
Movement matters – regardless of where you are on life’s journey. You, as well as the younger members of your family, should be able to enjoy the best active life possible. We provide Paediatric Physiotherapy to support babies, children, and young adults, to achieve their development, movement and physical wellbeing goals.
Children are not tiny adults!
Children are unique in their build, development, and movement patterns. For children, healthy development is more than the absence of a diagnosis or illness. Assessing and treating children is very different from treating adults (and not just because it can be a lot of fun!). Physiotherapists are trained in assessing, identifying, and treating movement difficulties in developing children. Movement is a crucial aspect of development for babies and children, allowing them to explore how their body and the world around them works. Children need to be able to move around to promote learning, (physical and mental stimulation) and growth.
The Growing Body
From a physiological perspective, infants and children are very different from adults. Children go through several stages of rapid growth in their lives, making it hard for us, as adults, to keep up at times. During childhood, children are more prone to specific childhood injuries due to their growing bones. Children have growth plates at the end of the long bones (such as arms and legs). As a child is growing in length, their growth plates add length and width to the long bones in the body. Growth plates are softer than the long bone itself, and therefore more prone to injury, which requires appropriate management to healing.
Our physiotherapist Nicolien has undergone extensive post-graduate training in the paediatric field to support children with complex care needs. She has a wide range of experience working in paediatric rehabilitation in The Netherlands and in Australia. Nicolien is trained to work with children with complex neurological, metabolic, and systemic conditions that require ongoing support and care to thrive. Combining her wide range of experience with a wealth of knowledge and passion Nicolien provides advice, education and support for all aspects or issues children may present with.
When should my child see a physiotherapist?
If you are concerned about the development or physical wellbeing of your child, you can consult a physiotherapist directly, without a Doctor’s referral. Some children need a bit of extra practice before getting the hang of things. Therapy is guided by your child’s needs and driven by goals that are set by you and your family.
A delay in development does not mean there is something ‘wrong’ with your child. If we gather a large group of similar aged children, some of the children will be ahead of their peers, and some of them will be behind. Most children develop at their own pace, guided by their environment and interests.
Common childhood concerns that physiotherapy can help with:
developmental delay in children of any age
specific delayed motor milestones such as walking
difficulty with coordination and balance
change in gait pattern such as toeing in or toe walking
plagiocephaly (flattening of the head in babies)
torticollis (asymmetric position of the neck)
W-sitting (when a child sits on their bottom with their knees bent and feet positioned outside of their hips)
difficulties in fine motor tasks and self-care tasks
rehabilitation following fractures
support in the management of paediatric lung disease
sporting injuries in children
- writing difficulties in school-aged children
What happens during the first appointment?
A discussion led by our Physiotherapist
An assessment by a physiotherapist working with children, is based on a detailed talk with you about your child, your concerns, reviewing their general health, followed by a physical assessment.
We cleverly disguise most of the assessment activities as fun games. The physiotherapist will analyse gross motor development, such as standing, hopping, jumping and running. Any physical exam will always be explained to you and your child first. We encourage parents to remain present during all appointments, and children will always be given the time needed to become comfortable with their clinician.
Children with Developmental Delays
Children with developmental delay achieve the best outcomes from regular physiotherapy sessions to support their general development and ability. Our team regularly liaises with other healthcare providers such as occupational therapists, speech therapists and paediatricians to support and coordinate care. Often the assessment of children takes a few visits to allow for children to become comfortable. It is important to us that your child feels safe and supported in our clinic to get the most from their sessions.
If you are interested in learning more about our Paediatric Physiotherapy Services, contact the clinic to organise an appointment with Nicolien. To Book online, simply click here. or call on 6646 3766.