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Patients with cerebral palsy, after a stroke or other damage to the nervous system, suffer from spasticity - erratic muscle contraction caused by a violation of signal transmission between the brain and muscles. Spasticity, in turn, leads to contracture of the joints and muscles (inability to fully flex and extend the limbs), which reduces functionality and limits the patient's movements.
The Bobath technique focuses on reducing spasticity by restoring motor function. The rehabilitation process, for example, of a child with cerebral palsy, is similar to its natural development:
Before the start of rehabilitation, the specialist who will conduct the Bobath therapy determines which functions the patient already performs independently. After that, consistent work begins on improving functionality and mobility.
Bobath is not physical education, it is work with a specialist who works out a set of movements with the patient: stretching, joint development, etc. Therapy is possible even with infants.
Bobath therapy is a combination of exercises:
Bobath therapy is prescribed for patients with damage to the nervous system (spinal cord or brain) that provoke spasticity:
The main task of Bobath therapy is to suppress muscle hypertonicity and enable the patient to stand upright. With systematic exercises (for some patients, therapy is prescribed 3 times a day, for others, several sessions a week are enough), positive changes can be traced in all patients.
Some patients progress quickly and significantly, while others recover less actively. Therapy does not cure the patient completely, but it contributes to a significant recovery.
In children with cerebral palsy, especially those who are diagnosed early and are prescribed Bobath therapy immediately, there is significant progress, as their joints are more pliable, and functions (holding the head, turning over, sitting) are just beginning to form.
The course of therapy is prescribed individually. Its intensity and duration depend on the patient's condition. Therapy can be repeated after some time. The minimum recommended course is 1 month.