A Guide to Musculoskeletal Health for Children at Physio Action
We are thrilled to introduce our Children’s Physiotherapy service at Physio Action. With a passion for helping kids of all ages overcome musculoskeletal conditions and injuries, we are excited to launch this new service at our clinic and create even more opportunities for children of all ages to thrive.
Our specialist Children’s Physiotherapist has a special knack for making children feel safe and comfortable during their treatment. From babies just starting their extraordinary journeys to teenagers braving the challenges of adolescence and growth, our expert physiotherapist covers the full spectrum of musculoskeletal conditions, whether they are congenital, developmental, or due to an injury that needs rehabilitation.
Experience and specialisation in children’s physiotherapy is essential when assessing each child’s unique needs and to create tailored treatment plans that prioritise their growth and development. With an emphasis on engaging exercises and activities, Physio Action champion a hands-on approach that not only aids in recovery but also helps them build strength, mobility, and confidence.
In addition to the knowledge base our physiotherapists have an incredible ability to connect with children on a personal level. Building strong relationships with the younger patients and their families is a vital part of our practice. By prioritising open communication and active collaboration, we ensure that parents and caregivers remain actively involved in their child’s progress at every stage of treatment.
We are committed to continuously enhancing our skills and knowledge in paediatric physiotherapy staying up-to-date with the latest techniques, research, and advancements in the field thus remaining at the forefront of providing the most effective and evidence-based care for our patients.
Who is Children’s physiotherapy for:
Babies, toddlers, children, and teenagers, so no matter how big or small your child is we are here to help. Whether your child has a congenital, developmental, acute/chronic problem or involved in an accident or sports injury our expert team will advise you on the best course of action.
Conditions we treat:
- General joint pain/injuries
- Post Fracture or dislocations rehabilitation
- Ankle pain including severs disease
- Anterior Knee pain
- Knee pain including growth related problems such as Osgood Schlatter’s and Sinding Larsen Johansson syndrome
- Shin splints
- Hip pain
- Back/neck pain including stress fractures / stress response
- Joint hypermobility
- Sports injuries
- Muscular strains/tightness
- Postural problems
- Maintenance of joint range of movement in juvenile arthritis JIA and long-term orthopaedic conditions e.g. Perthes disease
- Slipped capital femoral epiphysis (SCUFE)
- Hypermobility or Marfans
- Erb’s Palsy
Abnormal walking/running style, delayed walking
- Assessment for Physical development, milestones including crawling /walking, general movement patterns, balance, co-ordination, and posture
Remember kids are not mini adults, they have different anatomy and injuries from adults .They need a different approach to treatment from a physio who can accurately diagnose their problem and get them safely back to sport.
COMMON CONDITIONS THAT MAY REQUIRE CHILDRENS PHYSIOTHERAPY:
Anterior Knee Pain in Adolescents
This is pain around the front of the knee which my be caused by many different factors. It may be patella-femoral in nature and also described as Osgood Schlatters.
- Weakness of thigh muscles or quadriceps
- Tight lower leg muscles (quadriceps, hamstrings and calf)
- Overdoing activities or a significant increase in load
- Sudden changes in the type of activity
- Incorrect training technique or use of equipment
- Being overweight
- Increase in stress factors at home, school, exams, friends or family issues
- Foot problems
- Bony differences or asymmetry between the limbs
Useful tips: keep a healthy weight and lifestyle and try low impact exercises e.g. cycling + swimming.
Paediatric and Adolescent Patellar dislocation or instability
This can be caused by a traumatic injury or a ‘mal-tracking’ patella with a shallow groove which allows the knee cap to move sideways out of place.
Initial treatment is usually an x-ray to check for any bony involvement if it is a traumatic injury and a brace may be advised depending on the severity of the injury. Weight bearing as pain allows using elbow crutches if necessary.
Do not push into any discomfort and seek advice if the pain does not improve.
This can affect children of all ages but is usually apparent between 10-12 years old and is more noticeable through growth spurts.. It is a condition where the spine twists and curves to one side.
On assessment it is key to look out for a curved spine, leaning to one side, uneven shoulders, one shoulder or hip sticking out or clothes not fitting well
Useful links: The Scoliosis Association
SCFE: Slipped capital femoral epiphysis
This is a hip joint injury which is a ball and socket joint. I can happen slowly over several months and can be difficult to diagnose.
It is more likely to affect teenagers and can be linked to obesity, occasional thyroid disease or growth hormone treatment.
Symptoms can include:
- Hip, thigh and knee pain
- Limp or one foot can point more outward than normal side
- If pain becomes more severe may mean slip has become unstable and is more serious as can affect blood supply to the ball.
If a Physiotherapist or GP is suspicious then they will recommend an x-ray to confirm the diagnosis.
May require surgical intervention in order to stabilise the joint using pins to hold the femoral head onto the thighbone.
In some cases, the unaffected side is pinned to prevent further slippage.
Major risk is avascular necrosis if not stabilised early so early intervention is required.
What Is It?
Severs Disease is a common condition seen after rapid growth associated with the adolescent growth spurt, typically 8 – 12 years in girls and 10 – 14 years in boys.
Severs disease is generally painful over the heel bone (growth plate), where the Achilles Tendon attaches. You can sometimes get swelling over this area too. Pain is made worse by regular high impact sports such as repetitive running, jumping, gymnastics and football.
The important thing is not to worry! Although it is called a disease, it is not something that you have caught from somebody and will not last forever.
How is it diagnosed?
History taking and examination are normally sufficient to form a clinical diagnosis. X-rays are generally not required.
However, a simple test known as the squeeze test may be performed where each side of your heel is squeezed, which may be uncomfortable. If this brings on your heel pain, then this confirms your diagnosis.
How long will it last?
Pain usually settles within 6 – 12 months but sometimes the pain can take up to 2 years to settle down completely. Children with severs disease will recover completely with no long term problems.
How is it treated?
- Rest from sports/ impact activities
- Gel heel pads
- Anti inflammatory medication (always check with your pharmacy/GP)
- A pair of well cushioned shoes• Stretches as below. In this example, the right leg is the painful leg.
Our aim is to create an environment where children can flourish, excel, and regain their mobility with confidence.
The introduction of this new service at Physio Action is not just a milestone for our clinic, but also a testament to our dedication to comprehensive musculoskeletal health for all ages recognising the important fact that Children are not mini adults and need to be assessed according to their age and not just their condition.
What to expect during a consultation:
Your physiotherapist will complete an initial assessment with you and your child. They will ask about the presenting problem, your child’s birth and developmental history, any other medical conditions and their hobbies and interests.
A physical examination will assess the relevant joints and muscles and will include carrying out a few tasks for example walking, squatting, and balancing.
From this initial assessment, an action plan will be made with a provisional diagnosis and a plan for whatever intervention or referral is required. Your physiotherapist will talk about the cause and advise a treatment programme where necessary. This will include advice, education, and home exercises. They will organise suitable review appointments, which will depend on the presenting condition.
IS YOUR CHILD IN PAIN OR INJURED?
Kids Are Not Mini Adults! They have different anatomy and injuries from adults, and therefore, need a different approach to treatment by health professionals who have experience in being able to accurately diagnose your child and get them safely back to sport.
The Kids Back 2 Sport is a register of health professionals who have completed and passed an extensive post-graduate course on how to assess and rehabilitate active kids. This means that you can be confident that the practitioners on this list have all reached a high standard of knowledge specific to the younger active population.
To Find a KIDS BACK 2 SPORT Practitioner Near You, click here.
Parents: To Find out more information, click here.
Exercise & Sports
Pre & Post Operation
Womens’ Health &
Pre/Post Natal Physio
Back & Neck Pain
Referrals For MRI, XRAY,
Ultrasound & FMS
Sports Massage, Taping