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How do I Make Living with Cerebral Palsy Easier?

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  • Written By: Ian Christopher Abrams
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 10 November 2016
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Living with cerebral palsy presents a number of specific challenges that recur on a daily basis. Once you have decided to make living with cerebral palsy easier, the first step is to think about what your particular challenges are, as not all cerebral palsy symptoms are alike. You can start researching your type of cerebral palsy in order to see what others with cerebral palsy do. Sharing your situation with others who have cerebral palsy is an important way to feel less alone. It can help you meet acquaintances who can give you support and encouragement each day.

When you connect with others living with cerebral palsy, you can expect to hear about different treatments that help. Since there are different forms of cerebral palsy, some individuals may mention symptoms that you do not have. Pay the closest attention to the treatments mentioned by people who share your type of cerebral palsy, as they will be the most applicable to your situation. Since cerebral palsy is a motor condition and affects muscle movement, expect to hear physical and occupational therapy mentioned a lot, as well as speech therapy. Listen closely to people's experiences with their therapists so you can educate yourself before committing to your own course of treatment.

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Living with cerebral palsy can also be made easier with various medications. When medications are mentioned, be sure to take note of the side effects people are experiencing. That way, you can discuss any concerns that arise with your health care provider.

The challenges presented by living with cerebral palsy are significant, but because it is non-progressive, your condition will not worsen in the way that other conditions, such as progressive multiple sclerosis, can. This is an advantage, because over your lifetime, you can focus your search on medications and therapies without having to contend with new complications year after year. The key is to pay attention to what works for people in situations that closely mirror your own, because that will enable you to take a logical, results-oriented approach, rather than conduct blind experimentation. Do be sure to create a dialogue with your health care provider about your condition, and do not be shy about sharing what you have learned from others with cerebral palsy.

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bythewell
Post 3

@umbra21 - It doesn't really matter whether it's true or not though. I guess, in my view, living with cerebral palsy only seems difficult because it gets compared to the average. If people just respected individual limits and abilities regardless of what condition they supposedly have, then the world would be a better place.

Severe cerebral palsy does require a lot of adjustments for everyone, but I think stigma is really the most difficult battle.

umbra21
Post 2

@pastanaga - I've tutored a few kids with cerebral palsy and they are all completely different, the same way any kids would be completely different. In fact, I know it's only anecdotal evidence, but in my experience they were just ordinary kids who happened to have some physical challenges. I found them just as easy to teach as any other kids. If anything, they were willing to work harder, because they were used to working hard in general.

I think that there is a popular misconception that cerebral palsy always means that the person suffers from reduced mental capacity, but I would never take that for granted because it's not always true.

pastanaga
Post 1

In my experience, it's important to have no preconceptions when it comes to working with adults or children with cerebral palsy. The condition can affect people in vastly different ways.

I mean, this is true of everyone, really, but it's so much better if you go into a situation ready to adjust to whatever that person needs.

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