As many parents have discovered, while their child’s mobility may be limited, their imagination and thoughts can be limitless. While Cerebral Palsy is often based upon a brain injury that took place some time during pregnancy, birth or after delivery, it does not impact every child the same. Just as some children may face limb stiffness, a limb, speech issues, etc., others may have little, if any physical limitations, as opposed to those that may require constant, in-home care. Because CP is a “catch-all” diagnosis for a variety of neurological conditions, it’s difficult to draw direct lines between what each parent can expect post-diagnosis. The future, though, promises many great developments that will open new worlds for children of all ability levels.
First and foremost, smart technologies have expanded communication in profound ways for people of all ages and ability levels. Speech to text technology, applications (apps), Cloud storage and shrinking hardware all speak volumes about the ability of children in the future (and perhaps even now) being able to use affordable technology to extend beyond their ‘real life’ and into other communities that reflect their interests and situation.
To this point, the Internet’s ability to connect us all in unique ways is another inspiring component for the future. Virtual reality technology is expanding, but event today there is a wealth of beautiful environments anyone can dive into with a DVD/Blu-Ray player or quality Internet connection. Where zoos were once the only place you could find rare animals, videos of the Serengeti can now be reached at a moment’s notice. Encouraging a child’s interest in far off places can create a quality focus and area of study, if appropriate for your child; asking a child to track weather or research a weekend trip can further empower your child in a way never before believed possible.
One area of technology that has improved drastically is eye-motion technology. This support equipment has been better understood due to focus on individuals like Stephen Hawking, but has nevertheless existed in some form since the 1980s. Improvements, though, have made wonderful advances and growth possible in allowing those unable to communicate (or move) to find their voice.
Finally, advances in robotics are extremely promising for newfound mobility in the coming years. New projects and studies have allowed toddlers increased movement using electrodes and brain patterns to take action. Where this can take children with Cerebral Palsy and future generations may only be limited by our imagination; there is reason for extreme optimism when it comes to how much many children who are unable to walk or move will be able to accomplish in the decades to come.
The future is fun to think about, but your main focus, assuredly, is making the present better for your child with CP. Contact us today for more information on assistance and programs, as well as resources, which are available to children living with Cerebral Palsy. All of our help is provided free of charge, so call us at (800) 692-4453 or use our simple contact form to explore what is available today.