D.H. asks from Medina, OH on November 02, 2009
23 Month Old Still Won't Walk
Please help! If anyone has any advice, my 23 month old still won't walk. He has low muscle tone in his legs and he pulls up by locking out his knees then pulling his torso up with his arms. He is in the process of being evaluated by Help-Me-Grow, but there is about a month lapse between each meeting, and they don't evaluate HIM, they ask me a MILLION questions - does he do this, does he do that. Sometimes I'm not even sure what they're asking, and if he isn't doing that skill very well, I say no, because otherwise I feel like I'm lying. Anyways, so they make me feel like he's the DUMBEST kid ever - and that's not the case at all. He is so smart and he really picks up on things, and he talks about as much as most other 2 year old boys I have seen. He is such a laid back kid, I feel like he doesn't "want" to walk. After spending a weekend with his cousins, he is finally starting to "want" it and is making some progress, but I still feel like we have a long ways to go. Any suggestions? Advice? Encouragement?
So What Happened?™
He has been to two different pediatritians. We recently moved here. At our former residence (a different state even), he was being seen by the birth to three program (same as help me grow - an early intervention - a state program). His doctor wanted him to see a pediatric neurologist, but back at our old home it was a four hour drive and they couldn't get us in before we moved. So now I'm trying to get him in to one here, but they want him to see THEIR developmental specialist first, for their own developmental evaluation. (He has already been evaluated by developmental specialists TWICE). They said they won't even get him into their neurologist until NEXT YEAR. He has been evaluated by physical therapists, speech therapists, etc. He cruises fine, he crawled on time and did so normally.
***He is being evaluated by help me grow - but it has taken two and a half months so far and we're not even close to the physical therapy part of it. The waiting is so frustrating and you'd think they could give me some exercises to do with him while we're waiting.
N.K. answers from Cincinnati on November 04, 2009
D., you need to get him PROPERLY evaluated by pediatric therapy specialists. I don't know where you live, but ABC Pediatric therapy has a few locations. I have heard they are good. Cincinnati Occupational Therapy Institute has superb pediatric therapists. You deserve to have a thorough evaluation that IS hands on- there is no other way about it. Best to you, let all of us know what happens.
J.R. answers from Indianapolis on November 03, 2009
My daughter is a late talker and we've been going through First Steps. It's a state program and is usually free or a small co-pay based on income. I know they have therapists for motor skills like walking. We have a wonderful speech therapist that comes out once a week to the house. But a lot of therapists will go to daycare or the home, whatever works best for you and the little one.
My experience with First Steps has been wonderful. They never make me feel like I'm a bad parent and don't make me feel like something is terribly wrong with my daughter.
It does take a bit to get started but I think it's worth it:
https://www.infirststeps.com/ You first meet with an intake person then you'll get an evaluation will be scheduled with 2 therapists and then they make their recommendation for therapy afterwards. The program is for children under three.
Hope this helps.
L.L. answers from Indianapolis on November 03, 2009
My son wouldn't walk until 18 months. He used to lock out his legs too. I got into our early intervention program. A few people told to me wait (family, friends) but I knew he wasn't doing it the right way. He created bad habits (like locking out his legs) that kept him from walking! Sounds like your son may have done the same. My little guy is was very cautious and content with crawling or crusing for the most part. Early Intervention helped. They don't mean to make you feel that way or make your son look below the level he is at. Sometimes it takes more than it should to qualify them. Just stay on top of the paperwork and them to keep the process moving. My son was walking shortly after E.I. program not perfect but at least he was getting around. He now is fine at 26 months and even starting to climb ladders at the park with help! We did alot of knee bending and leg strenthing exercises in EI. At first i was like "arent we supposed to work on walking!?" but she knew what she was doing! :) good luck. lmk if you have ?s!
R.S. answers from Terre Haute on November 04, 2009
continue with the help me grow program. They should be able to give you excercises to work with him on muscle tone.
Does he has floor time?
do you have an excersaucer?
part of it is motivation.
Just because he has a developmental delay does not mean he is dumb. I am sure he intellectually on target. We all grow and development at diff. times/ levels. He needs more practice in this area.
See if you can get Occuptional and physical therapy.
found this website on bing.com I typed in excercises for low muscle tone toddlers.
K.G. answers from Cleveland on November 03, 2009
D., Please don't let people discourage you. Your son is probably just as smart as you said that he is, and more. Some kids just prefer to take their own time doing stuff. My son, who is now 7, did not walk until he was about 25 months. There was nothing wrong with him. He just didn't feel like it. When HE was ready, he took off running. He did the same thing with potty training. He decided to potty train at about 24 months and never peed in bed, since. He is very intelligent and laid back. He doesn't let things bother him.Continue being positive and encouraging to your son. Be supportive but don't force him. He will, when he's good and ready.
D.T. answers from Indianapolis on November 03, 2009
I've never heard of Help-Me-Grow but that sounds awful. Contact First Step immediately. Qualified therapists will come to your house for the evaluation (and follow-up therapy) within a week or so of making the first phone call. They will ask you questions, of course, but they will also be looking at your son and giving him a range of tasks to see what he's doing. If he qualifies for services (almost guaranteed since he's so old and not walking) then it's very inexpensive (and usually free). Therapy sessions are usually once or twice a week, an hour each time, in your house.
Going a month between therapy sessions is just nuts. What did your pediatrician say at the 1 year and 18 month well-baby visits about it? Most pediatricians will recommend seeing a physical therapist (usually through First Steps) if a child isn't walking by 18 months just to rule out anything. The sooner help is received, the better for the child.
R.K. answers from Dayton on November 03, 2009
Might take him to see April Dunnington in Centerville. She's a great chiropractor and has a lot of experience with kids, she might be able to help.
S.P. answers from Indianapolis on November 03, 2009
Your pediatrician should have addressed this at least a year ago and there are strengthening exercises and therapies for any weakness in his legs etc.
You need to be pro-active for your son so that he will receive any help that is available in your area in a timely manner.
Check with your doctor/clinic for resources that can help and do not wait around.
S.Y. answers from Dayton on November 03, 2009
He needs to see a physical therapist, they can really help to build his muscles and teach you exercises that are play for him that will build his strength. You will need a referral from your pediatrician. You will want to get him in as soon as possible so they can start working with him to prevent further delays. I did a pediatrics rotation for my physical therapy training and we had a few kids with low tone that were able to gain what they needed and did not need further therapy. Good luck.
E.W. answers from Cleveland on November 03, 2009
You never talk about doctors. I don;t know what help me grow is. WHat does your pediatrician say. Does he need physical therapy? You say low muscle tone. A doctor who specializes in this should evaluate him and then offer suggestions for at home therapy and other types of therapy. When he lays down bend and straighten his legs. Have him resist you a little. DO this everyday. It will help a little.