How Can Cerebral Palsy Be Prevented?


Cerebral palsy is a disorder that can occur in a child even before the child is born, during birth or after birth. This is a disorder where the part of the brain, which helps control muscles, is damaged. As the saying, ‘Prevention is better than cure’ goes; there are many preventive measures that pregnant women can take to safe guard their child in the womb. This will ensure that the child is not born with cerebral palsy.

Mothers to be need to have regular prenatal check up with their gynecologist to ensure that their baby is having proper nutrition and has a steady growth. They should avoid consuming alcohol, drugs, and avoid smoking totally.

Preventive care for children would include safety seat belts in cars and wearing of helmets is made compulsory when riding a bike or skateboard. Any injury to the head can lead to cerebral palsy.

If your child has jaundice at the time of birth then he or she should be treated with phototherapy. In this method of treatment, babies with jaundice are exposed to special blue lights, which help to break down bile pigments. This will ensure that there is no build up of bile pigments, which can cause brain damage resulting in cerebral palsy in your child. In severe cases of jaundice, blood transfusions are given.

An expectant mother should have herself vaccinated against German measles or rubella even before she intends to get herself pregnant. Rh incompatibility is another important factor that can lead to cerebral palsy.

The prognosis of this disease is that most people who have been diagnosed with cerebral palsy tend to lead a normal life span; it is only in severe cases of Cerebral palsy that their life span remains reduced. Prognosis shows that as people affected by cerebral palsy age they tend to show and experience several long term effects. Some of these include tightening of muscles, joint pains where they experience loss of flexibility of their joints; back pain becomes severe, severity of spasms, muscle contractures and reduced levels of energy. In continence is a symptom that is associated with cerebral palsy where the child is unable to control their urine and this leads them to wet their beds and even clothes at times. As patients of cerebral palsy begin to age, this symptom of incontinence also increases and becomes more pronounced in many patients.

Many factors lead to all these problems mentioned above. They are poor posture and wheel chair seating, deformities in the spinal cord, which leads to back pain becoming severe, and weight gain. People with cerebral palsy will find it difficult to walk because of lack of muscle coordination. They are also stricken with severe learning disability because of slow movement of their tongue and throat muscles. It is important that patients suffering from cerebral palsy undergo regular check ups and physiotherapy and have plenty of exercises. This will help them maintain proper weight and help their joints to be flexible.