New Video Sets the Record Straight on Postural Management

A new training video has been created by Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS) Children's Therapy Team, to highlight the importance of good postural management.

Postural management describes the 24-hour physical management of a child who has a physical disability and limited independent movement; it is therefore all about protecting the child's body shape.

The video, aimed at parents and carers, includes why postural management is so important, as well as highlighting some of the potential health complications if a child's body shape is not protected. It is to support children with limited movement who cannot reposition themselves.

Children who find it difficult to move, for example those with multiple disabilities - are most at risk of developing body shape distortions such as hip dislocations and twisting of the spine. This is because they sit and lie in limited positions and lack the ability to move freely and achieve a straight position.

Kate Clements, Specialist Children's Physiotherapist at LCHS, said: "If we can help parents learn to understand why certain postures are distorting their child's body, we can support them to correct it. Postural care is about using the right equipment and positioning techniques throughout the day and night to help protect the child's body shape. The earlier the intervention the better - but it's never too late to start."

The video also follows the story of Lillyanne Harley, from Lincoln, who after the successful use of a 24-hour postural management programme has made significant progress.

Her mum, Sally Harley also features in the video and speaks candidly about the daily challenges she has faced managing Lillyanne's condition and the positive effect her day and night time positioning equipment has had.

Sally said: "I was very pleased to be asked to be in the video and share our experience around 24-hour postural management. I really feel that this video will be beneficial to other families with children with complex needs so they they fully understand how vital postural management is for their child's long term health."

The video will be used as a tool by the Children's Therapy Team to help inform and support families to make informed decisions about their child's postural management, so that they can become experts in their care.

Parents will be fully supported when watching the training video by their physiotherapist or occupational therapist, due to the hard hitting message the video delivers about the importance of postural management in the development of their child. Children who have difficulty moving and who are unable to sit, stand or walk by themselves are at risk of developing complications of the hips and of the spine, which if left unchecked can lead to pain, structural changes, breathing and digestive difficulties and the possible need for surgery.