Importance of Recognizing Cerebral Palsy Early

Guest Author : Matthew Norman
(Austin State, TX : U S A)

Cerebral palsy refers to a range of different conditions affecting the motor skills of children. Though its effects do not worsen over time, the developmental disabilities become more pronounced as the child grows. The consequences range from mild, involving only minor impairments such as problems with balance, to extremely severe motor development deficits, potentially rendering basic skills such as speech and walking close to impossible.

Is there a treatment for cerebral palsy?

Though there is no known cure available for this developmental disorder, its early recognition and treatment can significantly improve the quality of life of the affected children.

Generally speaking, treatment options are limited to supportive therapy.

Only in extreme cases certain surgical procedures are also employed to reduce the burden that the disability may place on the child's life.

Nevertheless, when supportive therapies are pursued at a young enough age, they can dramatically improve the affected child’s motor activity for life.  Therefore, it is imperative that parents recognize the condition early in infancy and take prompt medical help to ensure the best possible results.

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Can one recognize cerebral palsy during infancy?

Delay or inability to attain developmental milestones appropriate for the age is the earliest and most important sign of this disabling disorder. Following are the symptoms expected at various stages of childhood development:

  • 0-3 months:
    Difficulty in holding head up , and may also exhibit stiffness in the legs.

  • 3-6 months:
    Delay in turning from back to sides or on stomach in lying position.
    Inability to reach for objects or may reach the offered object only with one hand, in addition to the symptoms mentioned for below 3 months of age,

  • 6-12 months:

    a.) Motor milestones
    Delay in learning to sit without support, difficulty in crawling, standing and walking even with support.

    b.) Milestones of language development and unclear speech
    Occurs usually when muscles of the face are also affected.

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Given above are only the general warning signs.
Have questions? Post them at Ask the Doctor.
Wish to read more on cerebral palsy? Click here.

Nevertheless, it is very important that you seek medical consultation at the earliest for proper diagnosis and effective management, if you have any reason to doubt that your child could be having developmental delay.

Category: Developmental Disorders

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More are indexed in the right column of the page.

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About the Author - Matthew Norman

Matthew Norman is an experienced legal and medical blogger with an avid interest in cerebral palsy and other childhood developmental disorders. His work has been featured on many different sites, including ones for a cerebral palsy lawyer at

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