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New Study Shows that Horse Therapy is an Effective Treatment for Children With Cerebral Palsy

Posted on in Cerebral Palsy

Chicago birth injury lawyer

Every parent hopes that their child will grow up healthy and strong. Unfortunately, approximately 2 out of 1000 children suffer from a serious condition called cerebral palsy. The causes of cerebral palsy are not fully understood. Sometimes, the condition is unavoidable. Other times, medical negligence during pregnancy or birth causes the condition.

Cerebral palsy can reduce a child’s ability to walk, talk, eat, and become an independent adult. Fortunately, there are several different treatments available to cerebral palsy sufferers that may reduce symptoms and improve mobility. A recent study has demonstrated that horse therapy, also called hippotherapy or equine therapy, is a viable treatment option for kids with cerebral palsy.

Horse Riding May Improve Motor Function

Traditionally, the treatment for cerebral palsy has included treatment like physical therapy, speech therapy, surgery, and medication. However, many experts are starting to take note of the benefits of horse riding for cerebral palsy sufferers. During hippotherapy, the horse’s natural movements are used to provide sensory and motor input. A recent study conducted by the Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology found that children who rode horses demonstrated improved motor skills and increased muscle tone. When horses walk or trot, they force the rider’s movements to match their own. The improvements exhibited by participants in hippotherapy are thought to be linked to the synchronization of the horse’s movements and the rider’s movements.

In addition to improved motor functioning, many parents of children with cerebral palsy find that horse therapy also has psychological benefits.  Many children with cerebral palsy cannot participate in sports or school activities the way their peers can. They may be forced to watch from the sidelines while their friends run and jump during a basketball game or dance recital. Horse riding can give children with cerebral palsy the opportunity to participate in a physical activity that is both beneficial and fun. If your child has cerebral palsy, consider asking your doctor whether hippotherapy may be a beneficial option.  

Contact a Chicago Birth Injury Attorney

Cerebral palsy is sometimes caused by medical negligence during the child’s birth or infancy. If you suspect that substandard medical care caused your child to develop cerebral palsy, contact a Cook County medical malpractice lawyer from Birth Injury Law Alliance, LLC to discuss your options. Victims of negligent medical care may be entitled to monetary damages. You and your child may be entitled to compensation for past and future medical expenses, assistive devices like wheelchairs and communication boards, and more. Call 312-462-4200] for a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/10/211028120429.htm

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5175116/

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