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5 Tips for Raising a Child with Cerebral PalsyParenting in itself is a challenging task for many, but raising children with special needs requires even more from the typical parent.
Pointers For Parents
Precious Salang-Quintos, a U.S.-based physical therapist and former therapist at the Center for Holistic Intervention Plans and Services, inc. (CHIPS) in Quezon City, shares the following pointers for parents of kids with cerebral palsy.
1. Stay strong. Your child will lean on you for strength, physically and emotionally.
2. Get information from experts rather than listening to hearsay. There are a lot of doctors, medical professionals, and organizations that can help you and give you scientifically-proven advice.
3. Do your own research through books, and reach out to other parents who have the same experience. It will greatly help in making decisions on how to deal with this challenge.
4. As much as possible, be there with your child during treatment sessions and check-ups with her doctor. Observe and ask questions no matter how stupid the question may sound. See to it that the exercises recommended by the therapist are done.
5. Treat your kid like a normal child but recognize his special needs. Allow him to explore the world like you would if you had a kid who didn’t require special attention. Keep in mind though the safety of his environment and adjust to their needs and level as needed.
Ms. Salang-Quintos also says, "The exercises your child does while in therapy should be continued at home, depending on the kind of CP your child has. Overall though, I consider swimming as a good exercise to help tone muscles. It is a great avenue for doing simple range exercises and stretching for children with CP. The child, being a child, will also surely enjoy the water."
Ms. Salang-Quintos also encourages parents to allow their child with CP to do his daily activities by himself, and assist only when needed to help promote independence.
An expectant mother herself, Ms. Salang-Quintos advises parents to be open to the possibility that their hopes and dreams for their child might not become a reality. Acceptance will help parents cope, and move on to provide the best possible care for their children.
Parents of kids with CP are called to make sacrifices and “go the extra mile” in many ways. They are special because of their resilience, patience and willingness to be students themselves for their beloved child.
Very soon: Tips for Raising a Child with Down Syndrome.
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