Preventing & Treating Microcephaly

Microcephaly is a rare medical condition, a neurological disorder in which a baby’s head is smaller than normal and undeveloped. It can occur while the infant is still in the womb or manifest within several years of birth. Often the smaller head is accompanied by a smaller brain, and abnormal development of the brain frequently goes along with microcephaly. The risk of this disorder is increased when the mother is exposed to infections throughout the pregnancy: rubella is one such example. While the severity of the condition varies, it is often found in conjunction with other medical conditions, including balance problems, seizures, and developmental delays. Microcephaly can be treated and prevented in several ways.

Speech Therapy

Dreamstime

Speech therapy for children provides care and support to those who have difficulty communicating or trouble drinking, eating, and swallowing. While children who lack difficulties other than a smaller than normal head do not require such programs as speech therapy, others require assistance in voice, language, and swallowing abilities. The particular treatment is geared toward a case by case basis as no two children with microcephaly are identical. The support is guided by the child’s symptoms and the particular severity of the disorder. The child must first be evaluated by an expert when there are concerns with expressive and receptive language, speech sound production, and pragmatic skills. The proper therapy geared toward the individual child is then planned out and implemented.

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