Cerebral Palsy Therapies

What a minefield. All we want is to do what’s best for W and do it as soon as we can for maximum impact on her. She has a fab Paediatric Neuro Physio but there’s more out there to compliment that physiotherapy.

Firstly, there are a hell of a lot of therapies out there. I’m going to make it my mission over the next few months to look into them all specifically for Wriggles and her symptoms of CP.

The difficulty is that, of course, every parent who has paid (or had it paid) for their child to have a certain treatment wants to believe it’s had an effect, that it’s made a difference, it’s human nature, and every practitioner of each therapy will tell you that their treatment is the best.

Here’s the list of treatments we’ve looked at so far (I’ll add to this list as I research them):

Advanced Biomechanical Rehabilitation (ABR)

“ABR can rebuild even the most severely distorted musculo-skeletal structure; redefining “rehabilitation” by improving the musculo-skeletal structure so significantly that normal motor functions recover spontaneously, making special training and management for “motor disabled” unnecessary.”


My thoughts on abr: W does not need rehabilitation and this feels and looks like man-handling to me. I don’t get a good feel for it for her at the moment, it may well be something we look to down the line. We would also need to travel to either Belgium or Scotland for assessment and training, that wouldn’t be easy. I get a feeling of pushiness from it but that might just be the overzealousness of parents who children it’s worked for, understabably.


“The Brainwave Programme, based on the conventions of neuroplasticity, aims to develop the maximum potential of each child. In taking an integrated approach to a child’s physical and cognitive development we also aim to enhance a child’s social skills and emotional well-being.

The main principles incorporated to improve motor performance are to encourage patterns of normal movement, inhibit abnormal movement patterns and reduce the effect of increased muscle tone.”


My thoughts on Brainwave: Interesting. I get a good feel about it, feels fairly conventional but relaxed and friendly for all involved but primarily for both of our children.


Very conventional therapy that’s holistic in approach, PT (physiotherapy), OT (Occupational Therapy) and SALT (speech and language therapy) work together.

“Bobath therapy is effective for children with all type of cerebral palsy and other allied neurological conditions, regardless of their associated problems or age. Early diagnosis and treatment is crucial to the management of these children. Each child’s problems are individually assessed by our inter-disciplinary team of physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech and language therapists. Then, as each child’s needs change, we regularly reassess the treatment.”


My thoughts on Bobath: Wriggles’ physio is Bobath trained. Bobath feels like a tried and tested therapy, I like that it’s holistic. A two-week assessment in North London isn’t so easy and I don’t think travelling there daily is fair on either of our babies.

The Scotson Technique

TST (The Scotson Technique) focuses on the respiratory system as the founder, Linda Scotson, found during her research (and her own son who had a brain injury) children who suffered with a neurological condition suffered with poor breathing.

” Parents are taught specific exercise techniques which use gentle, rhythmic pressure to strengthen the weak tissue structures of the diaphragm and other respiratory muscles. Gradually applying the pressures to increase the oxygen supplies to the joints of the arms, legs and pelvis also become part of the process. The exercises are non-invasive, pleasant and relaxing with no discomfort caused to the child or parent.”


My thoughts on TST: I like it. I like the background and how it came to be and I like that there is so much info on the website about it. I also like the theory. It also has a very large advantage in that it’s not very far from us, perhaps an hour’s drive. I also like that it’s a charity, not a business. I get a good feel from it.

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