Special Learning Articles
What Is Physical Therapy?
Physical therapy, also known as PT, is a treatment that helps build and rebuild motor skills in an individual. In specific cases of autism spectrum disorder (ASD or autism), physical therapy may help build age-appropriate motor skills, muscle tone, or with physical systems such as breathing control. Physical therapy can help with anything from holding a pencil to jumping over a rope.
When to Seek Physical Therapy
It is never too early to seek physical therapy for your child. It is important to keep up on your child’s doctor appointments and ask if they are developing age-appropriate motor skills. It is possible to obtain physical therapy for your baby before the age of one.
Cost of Physical Therapy
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 2004 usually covers physical therapy. You may be able to find an Early Intervention Program that serves children from birth to three years. The Public School System provides treatment up to the age of 21. The IDEA of 2004 provides this treatment free of charge.
Although public physical therapy is provided free of charge, you may feel that your child needs more. If you seek private physical therapy, it can cost up to US$200/hour. There are a few ways you can get help with covering the costs of private treatment. One way is to find out if your insurance provider covers physical therapy. If so, your next step would be to find out if the treatment center/provider accepts the type of insurance you have. Another option would be to look for state funding. Although it is sometimes difficult to come across, trust that it is out there. Also, some treatment centers/providers offer private pay options and are willing to work with you. These are all things you should look into when seeking physical therapy for your child.
Everyday HEALTH, everydayhealth.com: How Physical Therapy Helps Autistic Children, retrieved April 4, 20011 from http://www.everydayhealth.com/autism/physical-therapy.aspx
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