Pediatric Physical Therapy: Patient to Therapist

Pediatric Physical Therapy: Patient to Therapist

By Rebecca Rudisill, PT, Pediatric Certified Specialist

I was almost six feet tall at age 13. I did not particularly enjoy being that much taller than all of my classmates. So I would use horrible posture and slouch and hunch and try to make myself shorter to the point where I was essentially physically stuck in a rounded position. When my pediatrician referred me to physical therapy, I was devastated. I was so sure that physical therapy was the worst thing that could happen to me. But it wasn’t. 

When I went for my initial evaluation, crying and sullen, I was met with such kindness. My PT, Kim, shared words that stuck with me for years,“You haven’t done anything wrong. Your body isn’t doing its job right now, and that’s okay. We’re going to work together to make things better.” 

Over my several months in physical therapy, I saw myself get better, and I saw the other kids in the clinic get better. I was continually amazed by Kim’s kindness and intelligence. After that experience, I decided I wanted to be a pediatric physical therapist, and I never looked back.

Benefits of Pediatric Physical Therapy

As a pediatric physical therapist, I do everything from helping babies learn to sit to helping preteens recover from an ankle sprain. I work with children of all ages who have difficulties with strength, balance, coordination, and/or gross motor skills.  

Meeting Developmental Milestones: I help young children develop skills such as rolling over, sitting up, crawling, and walking. If you notice that your child is walking on their toes, frequently tripping and/or falling, or is unable to keep up with their peers, they also may benefit from physical therapy.

Living with Disabilities: Seeing a physical therapist can help children improve their strength, function, and ability to play. So often, children with disabilities end up on the sidelines due to difficulties keeping up with their peers. But with physical therapy to improve strength, balance, and coordination, these children are able to fully participate in life, school, and play. I treat children with a variety of diagnoses including cerebral palsy, torticollis, toe walking, Down Syndrome, cancer, spina bifida, and more.

Recovering from Injury: All children can benefit from physical therapy after an injury or a serious or debilitating illness. 

Choosing Woman’s for Pediatric Physical Therapy

Woman’s has a wonderful, collaborative team of therapists to treat children across the age range. We have excellent working relationships with many of the pediatricians, pediatric specialists, and pediatric surgeons in Baton Rouge, and we use a team approach with these physicians to provide high quality care. As many of our therapists work in both the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and in the outpatient setting, we are very comfortable with and capable of treating infants who are medically fragile or are recent NICU graduates.

For more information or to schedule a therapy consultation, visit our website or contact our therapy team at 225-924-8450.