Hypotonia/Hypertonia | What is it?
Hypertonia is increased muscle tone, and lack of flexibility. Children with Hypertonia make stiff movements and have poor balance. They may have difficulty feeding, pulling, walking, or reaching.
Hypotonia refers to decreased muscle tone, and too much flexibility. Hypotonia would make it difficult for you to pick your child up from under their armpits. Hypotonic children seem floppy when held and usually have difficulty lifting their own head and limbs. Performing fine and gross motor activities that require coordinated, controlled movements like sitting up without support, and feeding are difficult for children with hypotonia.
If your child is failing to meet early developmental milestones. For example, lifting their head, reaching, rolling over, crawling, and even walking there could be multiple explanations. Issues with muscle tone are common in children and are often noticed by parents and caregivers before they’re diagnosed by medical experts. Parents and caregivers should trust their instincts and talk to their child’s health care provider about their concerns.
Pediatric Occupational Therapy and Pediatric Physical Therapy Interventions
Sometimes Hypertonia and Hypotonia are apparent at an infant’s birth, but often issues don’t present themselves till months or years later. It’s never too late to notice an issue and seek a medical opinion and pediatric occupational or pediatric physical therapy. Pediatric Occupational Therapy and Pediatric Physical Therapy can help children with differences in muscle tone to increase their flexibility, build coordination, develop strength and improve balance. Noticing an issue is the first step toward improvement that can come from treatment. Learn if your child could benefit from therapy by getting scheduling a screening at either our Chula VIsta or Mission Valley location.