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Essay: Cerebral Palsy – physical, mental, emotional, social & spiritual health

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  • Subject area(s): Health essays
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  • Published: 15 October 2019*
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  • Words: 1,272 (approx)
  • Number of pages: 6 (approx)

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Cerebral Palsy (CP)  is a common inherited disorder that takes place before or during birth. It is a disorder that overall effects the muscle movements and posture. Symptom that must require a medical identification includes amplified reflexives, limp and rigid limbs and involuntary movements. These symptoms usually occur during the early stages of childhood. Muscular problems include difficulty walking and bodily movements, muscle rigidity, permanent shortening of muscle, problems with direction, stiff and overactive muscles, overactive reflexes, spasms and paralysis. Some development problems can be failure to grow properly, learning disabilities, and speech difficulty and stuttering in a child.

Cerebral Palsy can be caused by something going wrong during pregnancy, birth, or the neonatal period. Another well-known factor includes asphyxia (suffocation) or oxygen deprivation. Newborn babies and fetuses’ brains that lack oxygen can increase the risk of cerebral palsy. Other causes can be hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy and seizure disorders. About 10,000 babes are born with cerebral palsy each year in the U.S. Babies and babies that are premature that are under 5.5 pounds, increases the risk of this disorder. Some environmental causes of cerebral palsy is medical malpractice, drug use and birth-assisting tools can overall be risky. This common disorder has more than 200,000 cases per year in the U.S. Cerebral Palsy can last for years or for an entire person’s life. This disorder can be treated, but no cure has been established.

Part II – Physical Health

Cerebral Palsy can affect the muscles and can cause problems in controlling the muscle and movement. Extremely rigid muscles can cause limbs to be contorted. Eating difficulties due to muscle stiffness can lead to malnutrition. Cerebral Palsy means “brain paralysis” which is caused by damage to the brain. Diplegia (both legs) and hemiplegia (one side of the body), or quadriplegia (the entire body) is the most common type called Spastic and shows in about 70% to 80% of cases. Another type includes Dyskinetic which has two subtypes. 10% to 20% are also affected by movements in the face, mouth, and tongue, which is known as Athetoid. Writing and hand-eye coordination affects about 5% to 10% of cases, known as Ataxic. Many cases with cerebral palsy have normal or above average intelligence. However, communicating and expression is difficult and require speech and swallowing assistance (therapy). Vision and hearing problems can occur with Cerebral Palsy. Children with CP may not react or respond to some sounds or have slow speech. Three quarters of people with CP have strabismus which is being “cross-eyed”. This is because of weak muscles that control the movement of the eye. These people are commonly nearsighted and if not treated can lead to more severe vision problems. CP can be treated through drug therapy in order to relax muscles and to reduces seizures, as well as physical therapy to minimize non-functioning limbs and muscles.

This disorder is only untreated when a medical professional is unsuccessful to diagnose CP and treat it properly. If left untreated in a child, neuromuscular problems can severely affect the child’s future development. Prevention of CP in pregnancy can be vaccination of infection and seeking regular appointments for prenatal care, which will lower the risk factor that can result in CP. By preventing or lowering the amount of head injuries of a child, it can bring down the amount of brain damage.

Part III – Emotional and Mental Health

Cerebral Palsy can affect emotional health, by the limited expression of emotions due to brain damage. Children with CP may experience emotional challenges, because of limits in physical health. Their ability to not expressed themselves properly such as speech impediment and slow interactions and responses, cause them to not effectively learn properly. These small, but important problems can lead to enabling to thrive in the “adult world”. Other emotional damage can being able to regulate emotions and overcome challenges academically. In your adults with CP it is also common to have eye increased risk to develop anxiety, or depression. If untreated or ignored can also be linked to poor physical and emotional health.

Part IV – Social and Environmental Health

Cerebral Palsy also can affect social interaction with others. Children with this disorder can be more isolated, which later in the future affect how they experience real life situations. The severity of the CP and the child’s daily environment are also very important factors. CP children can be exposed to bullying because of their limitations and how they are unable to protect to themselves. It can lead to emotional disturbance for them and leave lifelong scars and turmoil. Without be able to collaborate and communicate with others will hang as a burden in the future and will reduce the likelihood to effectively to live a “regular” lifestyle. Important steps for children with CP to deal with these problems can include therapy for social behavior, as well as play and recreational therapy. These therapy options can benefit children to properly deal with stress, and overcome trauma, reduce anxiety, treat depression, and communicate with friends personally.

Part V – Spiritual Health

Spiritual health can be affected because of Cerebral Palsy due to simply being unhappy and or a feeling of discomfort. It can also be connected through people’s personal life and through others and environment. Mainly adults with CP can go through traumatic experiences and less confident due to lacking in communication all skills, which can ultimately lead to isolation and a life that God did not intend of anybody. CP is a lifelong disease which takes control of the person’s life. Using CFR, (Creation, Fall, Redemption) God meant for humans to be made in his perfect image, and health conditions, such as Cerebral Palsy was an overall act (not direct) of sinful ways. People also portray sinful behaviors as they treat people wrongly with CP because they different from “normal people”. God sees us all the same as children of God, no matter are physical look.

Part VI – Case Study

A well-known Pediatric Neurologist, Dr. Janice Brunstrom, was born 40 years ago three months premature and only weighing 3 pounds. Her physical health was falling and is she survived, she would have cerebral palsy that would cause both legs to be crippled. Her mental health was just as bad, for her parents were told that she would be mentally restarted and likely socially incapable of proper communication. As Janice grew, she defied the doctors diagnosis and learned to read at the age of 4 as well as being able to walk and do even more. She continued shattering everyone’s expectations and becoming valedictorian of her high school. On through college, medical school, and advanced training in pediatric and neurology, which gave her the ability to accomplish and establish the best learning center for children with CP at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Brunstrom says strongly to, “not to forget the hidden potential of so many children with C.P.” Her abilities prove that in social health from mental retardation and communication changed for the better as Janice helps all children with disabilities in CP that are unable to walk, hear, see, speak and changes their lives, so they can reach their goals.

In conclusion Cerebral Palsy is a health condition that affects all types of health and is a lifelong problem throughout all stages of development. This life changing disease can be prevented before the child is born through vaccinations and practicing good health and child safety. Through drug therapy in lowering seizures, physical therapy in be able to increases joint movements, and behavior therapy for social communication, CP can be less severe. Although there is no actual cure, as seen by Janice Brunstrom, Cerebral Palsy can be overcome.

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