Occupational therapy practitioners provide early intervention services to children ages birth to three years old who exhibit developmental differences. Delays in typical development that we may address through occupational therapy include gross motor skills, fine motor skills, reflex integration, social/emotional skills, and cognitive skills. The first three years of a child’s life are a critical time for development. Therefore, if a delay is suspected, it is best practice to begin treatment as soon as possible.
Occupational therapy practitioners can also treat infants with Torticollis. Torticollis is a rare medical condition where the child’s head is tilted toward one side with the chin elevated and leaned toward the opposite side of the head. The cause of this condition is the shortening of the sternocleidomastoid muscle in the neck. Torticollis can be congenital (present at birth) or acquired (developed as an infant due to positioning preference). Positioning and movement techniques are used to restore neck movement and to reverse/stop the progression of skull deformity and craniofacial asymmetry. Treatment of Torticollis will also help to improve the quality of developmental milestones.
Family involvement during treatment for infants and toddlers is vital. Therefore, during all visits, the therapist will partner and work alongside parents/caregivers to provide proper education, techniques, and strategies to continue building skills in the home and everyday routines.