Things You Need to Know about Cerebral Palsy

There are cases of cerebral palsy here in Singapore. Cerebral palsy covers different neurological conditions that are the source of physical disabilities. “Cerebral” refers to the section of the affected brain. “Palsy” on the other hand refers to the partial or complete paralysis of muscle which is often supplemented by tremors and loss of sensation. Basically, this condition disturbs the nervous system and the brain. 


The cause of cerebral palsy is periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), an anomalous brain development, bleeding of the brain and brain damage after birth. If you want to know more about the condition, you should know these things:

Kinds of Cerebral Palsy

There are four types of cerebral palsy: dyskinetic, spastic, hypotonic, and ataxic cerebral palsy. Spastic cerebral palsy has three sub-types to include spastic hemiplegeia (muscle stiffness on one side of the child’s body), spastic quadriplegia (muscle stiffness accompanied with mental retardation) and spastic diplegia (muscle stiffness on the lower part of the body). Ataxic cerebral palsy affects the depth perception and balance of the child. Athetoid or dyskinetic cerebral palsy affects the child’s body but the intelligence is normal. Hypotonic cerebral palsy will appear in the infancy of the child; it is characterized by a floppy head.


Symptoms of Cerebral Palsy

If you are concerned about your child, you should know how to check for symptoms of cerebral palsy so you can do something about it. There are general symptoms of cerebral palsy and it will manifest in the first 3 years of your child’s life. If your child’s crawling, speaking and walking develops later, he/she may have this condition. Other symptoms include limited movements, seizures, hearing problems, eyesight problems, uncontrollable bowel movement, stiffness of the muscle, balance and coordination problems and involuntary muscle movements.


Diagnosis and Treatment

If you are concerned about the development of your child or if you identified the symptoms of cerebral palsy, you should see your physician or the child’s paediatrician right away. The doctor will observe and examine the child. When the child is older, he/she may be sent to a psychologist to assess his/her intelligence. The doctor will require the child to undergo cranial ultrasound, magnetic resonance image scan, computed tomography scan and series of blood tests.

Minimizing Risks

The treatment will depend on the needs of the child. Treatments should be considered by parents because its goal is to teach and encourage independence. Your physician will suggest other experts that can help your child like speech therapist, physical therapist, psychologist and many more. Unfortunately cerebral palsy cannot be prevented but mothers can minimize the risk by going to prenatal check-ups, submitting to vaccinations, discontinuing smoking and drinking alcohol, eating healthy and exercising regularly.

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