For children, any type of medical office can be scary. If the child was injured, they might associate the visit with the injury they experienced, which will make them frightful and less likely to cooperate. However, when it comes to physical therapy, full cooperation on the part of the patient is essential, even when it comes to children. Learn what you can do to make your child more comfortable at the physical therapist's clinic and what you can do to maximize their treatment.
Allow Time for Questions
One factor that makes physical therapy a scary place for children is the unknown. The average child has not had any interaction with this type of medicine before, so they have no idea what to expect. Allow plenty of time for your child to ask questions about what the therapy is. You should also arrive early to your appointment so that the child can look around and get a feel for the place.
If your child is recovering from an injury, you want to make their sessions as enjoyable as possible. A part of ensuring your child is comfortable is dressing the child appropriately for treatment. Avoid putting the child in tight or ill-fitting clothing. Loose and flexible clothing is best, along with shoes that are comfortable and easy to remove. Their therapist might even have specific clothing guidelines.
In addition to not knowing what to expect, your child might not even understand the purpose of the treatment. You can settle the child's fears by talking with them in detail about the treatment. For example, if the child hurt their back while playing sports, you can tell them how the treatment sessions will help their back recover so that they can get back to enjoying their favorite sport.
Practice at Home
To get the most from the sessions, make sure you practice at home. If the therapist provides a list of exercises for the child to perform at home, make sure they have time in their schedule to do so. In addition to maximizing the effectiveness of the therapy, practicing the exercises in the comfort of their home will make the child more relaxed with the exercises once they return to therapy.
In addition to your efforts, speak with the child's physical therapist about any concerns you may have. A physical therapist like those with Hands-On Physical Therapy will be happy to partner with you to ensure the child feels comfortable.