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Gross and Fine Motor Development including handwriting

Gross motor skills maneuver large muscle groups coordinating functions for sitting, standing, walking, running, keeping balance and changing positions.Throwing a ball, riding a bike, playing sports, lifting and sitting upright are brief descriptions of large motor movements. Gross motor skills depend upon muscle tone, the contraction of muscles and their strength for positioning movements.

Fine motor skills coordinate precise, small movements involving the hands, wrists, feet, toes, lips and tongue. Features of fine motor control include handwriting, drawing, grasping objects, cutting and controlling a computer mouse. Experts agree that one of the most significant fine motor achievements is picking up a small object with the index finger and thumb referred to as the pincher grip, which usually occurs between 8 and 12 months of age.

Perceptual Skill Development

Two aspects of a child’s growth combine to produce perceptual-motor development. Perception is any process by which children become aware of what is happening around them. Children gain information through their senses-what they see, hear, smell, taste, and touch. As babies grow, their senses become sharper and more accurate, and their ability to perceive becomes stronger. They begin to organize their perceptions and make sense of them.

The increasing ability to control the movement of the body is called motor development. Little children learn to move different parts of their bodies as they get involved with the objects and people they perceive. This is called perceptual-motor development. The perceptual-motor process is an “in-out” process, since the information comes in to the mind, which then tells the body how to move in response.

The first years of life are very important in developing good perceptual-motor abilities. Educators call this period the sensori-motor period, because infants and toddlers spend so much time observing and reacting to their world through their senses.

Self-Care Skills

Self care skills are the everyday tasks undertaken to be ready to participate in life activities (including dressing, eating, cleaning teeth and more). They are often referred to as the activities of daily living (ADL’s). While these are typically supported by adults in young children, it is expected that children develop independence in these as they mature

Oral Motor and Swallowing Skills

Oral motor development refers to the use and function of the lips, tongue, jaw, teeth, and the hard and soft palates. The movement and coordination of these structures is very important in speech production, safe swallowing, and consuming various food textures. Normal oral motor development begins prior to birth and continues beyond age three. By age four, most children safely consume solids and liquids without choking.

our skills

Physical Therapy

Occupational Therapy

Speech Therapy

Oral Motor Skills

Physical Therapy.

Physical therapy focuses on a child’s ability to participate in daily activities and routines in their home, school and community by addressing physical challenges.  Pediatric Physical therapy services address gross motor development and coordination, environmental exploration, play skills, orthopedic and neurological development, self-help strategies, and sensory function.  Pediatric Physical therapists perform evaluations, plan and implement treatment strategies and developmentally appropriate activities, identify appropriate assistive devices and durable medical equipment, and create solutions for barriers that limit interaction with their environment and peers in family-, learning-, and community-based activities.

Speech Therapy.

Pediatric speech and language therapy focuses on your child’s communication skills by addressing speech, language, and play and interaction development.  Pediatric speech and language therapy services focus on articulation and phonological disorders, expressive and receptive language problems, auditory processing and neurological disorders, oral-motor deficits, cognitive skills such as problem solving and reasoning, social skills, and behavior management.  Pediatric speech and language pathologists perform evaluations, plan and implement treatment strategies that may focus on oral-motor skills, stuttering, tongue thrust, eating and swallowing skills, and identify appropriate augmentative communication.

Occupational Therapy.

The ultimate goal of an Occupational Therapist is to increase independence in Activities of Daily Living (ADL).  In doing so, the therapist addresses a broad number of challenges, including social-emotional, physical, cognitive, communication, and adaptive behavior challenges.  Pediatric occupational therapy services, more specifically, focus on addressing feeding skills, perceptual and sensory processing, fine motor development, environmental exploration, play skills, and psychosocial skills.  Pediatric occupational therapists perform evaluations, plan and implement treatment strategies and developmentally appropriate activities, decrease environmental barriers that limit participation in family, learning, and community based activities, and identify appropriate assistive technology.

Oral Motor Therapy.

Oral motor development refers to the use and function of the lips, tongue, jaw, teeth, and the hard and soft palates. The movement and coordination of these structures is very important in speech production, safe swallowing, and consuming various food textures. Normal oral motor development begins prior to birth and continues beyond age three. By age four, most children safely consume solids and liquids without choking.

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