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Please enlighten me about cerebal palsy

(8 Posts)
supportman Sat 01-Sep-07 20:53:52

Starting my new job next week and it has just occured to me that I know next to nothing about cerebal palsy and there are a few kids at the childrens home that have it, I would like to know the basics so I know what to expect and how I need to support them.

Most of the time I have been working with autistic clients, and also have experiance of other disabilities but can't recall ever working with a client with CP.

magsi Sat 01-Sep-07 21:17:18

o.k, I am crap at proper terms etc, but this is how I understand it. 'Cerebral' meaning brain and 'palsy' meaning muscle and when you put the two together basically it is a wider term for anyone who has brain damage that affects muscles amongst other things. My ds has cp in the form of a Hemiplegia (only affecting the one side due to damage on the opposite side of the brain). Quadraplegic affects both sides. Sorry its short and sweet but i'm sure someone will be along and give a better explanation than me smile

mymatemax Sat 01-Sep-07 21:31:37

like most conditions it varies enormously & is really an umbrella term for a neuro condition that effects movement
DS2 has spastic diplegia - so his legs mainly are effected.
It can vary hugely from barely noticeable to the person being completely dependent on others for their care & needs.
Have a look at the SCOPE & CEREBRA websites.

sparklygothkat Sat 01-Sep-07 21:34:45

I have a DS with spastic diplegia CP and a DD1 with Spastic Diplegia CP. It means their legs are mainly affected though DS is affected in his hands too.
Cerebral palsy is an umbrella term, and covers very mild through to severe CP. DD1 has mild CP and DS has modarate CP.

twoisplenty Sat 01-Sep-07 21:43:17

Carrying on from Magsi's decription:

CP is such a vague term as it can mean it affects only one limb in a minor way such as being a bit stiff, a slight limp etc, to being totally incapable of movement including poor head control. And it can impair vision, there can be poor speech or no speech, there can be mild or severe learning difficulties, epilepsy can be more prevalent with CP. A long list!

So really each person with CP is very different.

I can't really think of a way to be prepared for your new job, I personally think the best thing is to meet the children first, then once you know what kind of problems they have, you can delve into a website which can give you an insight into their exact problems.

One thing I have learned about CP: my ds has many friends in school with CP, and they are all lovely, charming, (mostly) happy and easy to get along with. Hope this helps a bit.


BTW, Hi Magsi, hope the summer hols were ok, good luck for school for your ds, I'm sure once he settles in, he will enjoy school...it will be Christmas before you know it!!! (Read your other thread, am I the only one looking forward to School?!)

2shoes Sat 01-Sep-07 22:03:26

dd has cp and I have to say all the dc's at her school are different. after 9 years I have found the easiest way is to forget the cp and see the child iynwim as otherwise It can get really confusing.

supportman Sun 02-Sep-07 10:11:13

Thanks for the replies everyone, thats given me a little bit to go on. I understand that everyone is different, I found that out with autism and although there is a lot of similarities, each and every client I have worked with require different levels of support.

Twoisplenty you say epilepsy is more prevelent with CP, I have noticed that is the case across the board and have not worked in a home where there have not been at least one client who has it.

needmorecoffee Sun 02-Sep-07 17:03:55

Hi Supportman. Can't really add to what others have said. My DD has severe dystonic quadraplegic CP and cannot roll, sit, walk, move any limbs or speak. She also has epilepsy.
But her intellect is normal so never assumea non-verbal child with CP isn't understanding every word. That said, my DD can take ages to see something because she has cortical visual impairment and if's she's listening to something, her eyes turn off. So getting the signals from the outside world can be a bit squiffy sometimes. People who don't explain things clearly to her or give her enough time then assume she doesn't understand which annoys me no end.

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