Cerebral palsy is a lifelong disease, and improper care can lead to worsening motor deficits with age. Because cerebral palsy is a developmental condition, it impairs a person’s movements from birth. Children’s motions are likely to be impacted as they grow and develop, resulting in anomalies.
High muscular tone, often known as spasticity, is one of the most prevalent symptoms of cerebral palsy. When people develop spasticity, their muscles contract involuntarily. This promotes uneven development or drags the body into aberrant positions.
It is critical to emphasize early therapy of motor deficits and secondary diseases to avoid cerebral palsy from compromising an individual’s growth and quality of life. The section that follows will go through numerous ways that cerebral palsy and its associated disorders might worsen with age.
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Complications of Cerebral Palsy
Cerebral palsy medications can cause a variety of consequences. It can have a physical and psychological impact on an individual if not properly managed through various means including therapy and medications. These include:
Spasticity is defined as involuntary muscular contractions induced by a disruption in signal transmission from the brain. This may result in stiffness, tremors, and discomfort.
While the brain damage that causes cerebral palsy worsens over time, spasticity does not. Constantly contracting muscles over an extended length of time promotes muscle, bone, and joint disharmony.
Children develop quickly, and unequal muscular tensions can cause bodily deformities, contractures, or dislocations. As a result, scoliosis and hip dislocations are quite common in people with cerebral palsy.
Difficulties with Communication
Although cerebral palsy predominantly affects a person’s movements, it can also cause speech issues, making it difficult for them to engage with others. Speech, language, and hearing problems, for example, are frequently connected with cerebral palsy and lead to communication difficulties.
Impaired communication skills in children as they get older can have an impact on healthy relationships at school, work, and other social settings. Furthermore, they can cause frustration or loneliness, both of which have a detrimental influence on an individual’s emotional well-being.
Regular speech, language, and hearing evaluations and/or therapy are the most effective strategy to identify communication issues. A speech-language pathologist may educate people on how to speak successfully and help them develop their social skills. These abilities can be carried over as kids age, allowing them to engage in more meaningful interactions with people in a variety of settings.
Fatigue and Premature Aging
Individuals with cerebral palsy are also prone to accelerated aging as a result of impaired motor control, musculoskeletal strain, and higher stress levels.
Living with restricted movement throughout one’s life can cause additional stress on both the mind and the body. In fact, people with cerebral palsy require up to 3-5 times the energy of those without a handicap to move around.
Body deformities can also provide additional stress on certain body organs or joint tissues. As a result, accelerated aging may manifest as persistent pain and physical issues.
Cerebral palsy can put undue strain on your musculoskeletal system. As a result, people with cerebral palsy tend to have more rapid wear and tear on their bodies as they age. Some of this can be managed through therapy and medication.
Other than the previously mentioned spasticity, scoliosis, and hip dislocation, musculoskeletal disorders related to cerebral palsy include osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. The wearing down of cartilage is referred to as osteoarthritis.
Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones grow fragile, lose density, and are prone to fractures. Aging, poor nutrition, limited mobility, and a lack of weight-bearing are all common causes.
Our bones are the structural skeleton of our bodies, allowing mobility while also providing structural support. Weak bones can increase the danger and consequences of falls and accidents in people with cerebral palsy as they become older.
Aging with cerebral palsy affects not only the physical but also the psyche. Adults with cerebral palsy are more prone than those without a handicap to suffer from depression or anxiety.
Cerebral Palsy is a disease that does get worse as time goes on, but with the proper management and treatments, those with Cerebral Palsy can live fulfilling lives.