Muscle Tone and Motor Co-ordination Disorder Assessments
For children who display limited or delayed motor skills, a muscle tone and motor co-ordination assessment is generally required. This assessment takes into account the child's age, the developmental milestones accomplished (or yet to be accomplished), balance, postural stability and upper limb coordination. Analysis of muscle balance and joint stability is essential to make a difference to the child's developmental outcomes.
Handwriting is a complex skill that requires many elements in order to be completed successfully. These include motor, sensory, graphomotor and perceptual skills as well as cognitive function. Because handwriting requires such a comprehensive range of skills, it is not uncommon for children to experience difficulty in developing this ability.
Handwriting is often critical for school success. An understanding of the child's cognitive and sensory performance is required to tailor a plan to develop adequate muscle memory for this task. Older children may be eligible for special provisions for HSC and NAPLAN testing. Sometimes Dysgraphia is an appropriate diagnosis.
At Newcastle Paediatric Occupational Therapy our compassionate occupational therapist uses a range of assessment criteria to identify the cause of each child's difficulties. This may include motor control assessments, neuromuscular assessments as well as understanding the child's cognitive and psychosocial behaviours. We can then tailor the most effective strategy to suit the child's unique needs.
Neurodevelopmental Delay Assessments
Children who have problems with energy regulation, concentrating, remaining focussed and processing environmental stimuli may be suitable for a comprehensive neurodevelopmental assessment. This assessment could include an individual sensory profile. This is used to formulate safety tools for the child in identifying triggers for the behaviour and calming strategies to help them cope in different settings.