Pediatric Physical Therapy
Physical therapy in pediatrics is widely used. Many types are used at the moment of baby birth.
Physiotherapy gives good results in the treatment of a sufficient number of diseases. There are many techniques used to combat different pathologies. The effectiveness of such treatment is supported by scientific research.
However, the majority of procedures are prescribed mostly to children (children’s physical therapy) than adults. It is necessary to follow certain rules, which will help to get the maximum benefit from treatment and avoid the possible occurrence of negative reactions.
Features of the appointment of physical therapy in pediatrics
In order for the treatment to proceed as efficiently as possible, it is necessary to follow a number of rules and remember certain features when prescribing and performing physiotherapeutic procedures. They are:
- The child’s body responds to treatment faster than an adult.
- Physical therapy can be repeated no earlier than after 2 months. If you need to conduct a second course of treatment at the same location, you should choose a different physical factor.
- As a rule, children are prescribed one treatment factor per course, because their body is more susceptible to physiotherapeutic effects, and combined exposure to physical factors enhances the effect of each of them individually.
- The dosage of the therapeutic agent should be dosed starting from the minimum parameters, gradually increasing to the necessary ones. They are always lower than in adult patients’ treatment.
- In pediatrics, it is recommended that only local procedures be carried out, it is better to abandon the general ones.
- The procedure time is always shorter than for adults because the child’s body is able to respond more quickly to treatment and get tired faster.
- It is preferable to prescribe procedures in a pulsive, softer mode compared to continuous.
- The procedure should be carried out in the doctor’s presence.
- With any negative changes in the children’s condition, it is necessary to withdraw treatment.
- For young children, frightening techniques are not used: electrosleep according to the orbital-occipital method, darsonvalization, intranasal electrophoresis, etc.
- It is not recommended that a child be given laser radiation without special needs since it has a powerful bio stimulating effect. It can cause unpredictable reactions on any part of the child’s body.
The combination of physiotherapy
You can combine physiotherapy methods according to the following schemes:
- a type of device treatment + massage;
- a session of device treatment + a hydrotherapy procedure;
- a hardware treatment procedure + a heat treatment procedure.
In some cases, a combination of two therapeutic device treatment options is acceptable.
Physical therapy in children is contraindicated:
- with mental or physical overloading of the child;
- less than 30-40 minutes before eating and 1 hour after eating;
- during or immediately after an acute infectious disease;
- on the bone growth zone;
- with a tendency to bleeding;
- with reduced body weight;
- in areas with violation of skin integrity;
- in the presence of purulent-inflammatory diseases, with the danger of disease dissemination;
- with a decrease in the adaptive body capabilities;
- with intolerance to a physical factor.
Methods of physiotherapy used in childhood
Children benefit from balneotherapy, spa treatment, heat therapy, medical massage, magnetotherapy, phototherapy, ultraviolet radiation of the long and medium wavelength spectrum, sinusoidal modulated options.
The electrodes are carefully fixed with elastic bandages. Contact pads must be used thicker than for adults. After the procedure, it is recommended to lubricate the skin with oils or a fat baby cream to moisturize and nourish the dermis because the flow has a local irritant effect.
Before and after each session, the nurse should carefully examine the child’s skin for possible damage. Most often in pediatrics, sinusoidal modulated flows are used in alternating mode, including for electrical stimulation.
Fluctuorization is prescribed for children from 6 months of age.
Galvanic flow is used for interstitial electrophoresis (from the first days of life).
Ultratonotherapy is prescribed in pediatrics from the age of 2. Ultratonotherapy is preferable due to a good thermal effect and a less pronounced irritant effect. The treatment takes place at low or medium intensity, the session time depends on the age of the child.
Diadynamic flows have a more pronounced irritating effect on the child’s skin, therefore they are used less often than amplipulse therapy. The technique is prescribed for 2-3 years’ children.
- This method of treatment has been widely used in pediatrics because if the procedure is carried out correctly, it does not cause negative reactions from the child’s body and has a beneficial effect on it.
- In pediatrics, from the first days of a child’s life, infrared, red, and blue light spectra are often used.
- Newborns with the hemolytic disease are treated by exposing them to blue light according to a special scheme.
- This type of physiotherapy is used in children from birth for the prevention and treatment of many pathologies.
- There are general and local methods.
- The general technique in the medium or long-wavelength range is used for skin diseases and for the prevention of rickets. Locally, Ultraviolet irradiation is prescribed for diseases of ENT organs, certain skin diseases, etc.
- Contraindications for the appointment of this treatment type are common. In addition, this procedure is not used for low hemoglobin, navel lesions, and hypercalcemia.
- Laser therapy is prescribed no earlier than two years of age.
It is used in the pathology of the musculoskeletal system from the first month of life. The intensity and exposure time are selected individually. In children under the age of 1 year, the ultrasound density is about 0.05 W/cm², at 1 year, the ultrasound power cannot be more than 0.1 W/cm². As children grow, it increases, but cannot exceed 0.6 W/cm².
Various general or local baths have a beneficial effect on children’s health: pearl, coniferous, marine, underwater massage. Douche is not used in children’s practice because they have an exciting effect on the central nervous system.
Alkaline and heat-moist inhalations are prescribed for diseases of the ENT organs from the first days after birth. Medicines are used with great caution because the children’s body is prone to the development of allergic reactions.
Massage is used for many pathologies from the first days from the moment of birth as well as prophylactically in a planned manner.
The most important type of treatment used in pediatrics. Under the guidance of a doctor, gymnastics strengthens corpus muscles, increases exercise tolerance, improves coordination of movements, improves blood supply to organs and tissues, stimulates the respiratory system and solves many other issues. Physical therapy is carried out from the first weeks of a child’s life and is usually combined with massage.