Cerebral Palsy : Know the causes and actions you can take

Cerebral Palsy : Know the causes and actions you can take

Knowing Cerebral Palsy and Viraat!

[This posts helps in getting face to face with the challenges of a child detected with Cerebral Palsy. Viraat, a 6.5year old child, who needs support from people like us today for his medications and therapies to be able to walk and talk, to be able to express his excitement when he achieves that and to see a smile on a mum’s face for her child’s achievements.]

Harsha says, “Viraat was a full term baby delivered via C – Section. All her blood reports, sonography and other reports turned out normal and she enjoyed her pregnancy. Neither did her water bag burst nor did she dilate. Her due date was 23rd March 2012 and Viraat was born on 27th March 2012. What happened in between?

Her doctor delayed her delivery by 4 days. And that was a trigger of a challenged life inside the womb. She was induced pain on 27th March thrice but still she didn’t dilate. She was then immediately taken for a C – section. At birth it was found that Viraat ate his own stool in the womb. All necessary actions were taken at that time but when he came out, he did not cry at all. He was immediately referred to another hospital and was admitted in NICU in critical condition with the problem of severe perinatal asphyxia. Initially he was on life support ventilator and later brought down to oxygen and then completely off any respiratory mask. He was in NICU for 55 days.”

Cerebral Palsy is a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is under development. Cerebral palsy affects the  muscle tone, movement (voluntary and involuntary), and motor skills (coordination). Lend a helping hand for one such child Viraat to help him with advanced therapies. #helpchild #cerebralpalsy #neurologicaldisorder

What is Cerebral palsy (CP) and its symptoms?

Cerebral Palsy is a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is under development. Cerebral palsy affects the  muscle tone, movement (voluntary and involuntary), and motor skills (coordination).

Cerebrum, a part of the brain is responsible for the Muscle control. This upper part of the brain, if damaged, before,  or during the birth or within 5 years after the birth of a child, may result in Cerebral Palsy. Though Cerebral Palsy is not progressive, but the result of this damage is varied. It can affect vision, hearing, speech problems (delayed or completely not able to speak), learning abilities, sleep, tooth decay, osteoporosis, seizures and even behavioural problems. It all depends on the extent of damage towards a baby’s brain.

As babies grow, features as over/under developed muscles, leading to uncontrolled movements, slow writhing movements, unusual crawling, difficulty in grasping objects and even tying shoes may seem difficult. Spastic movements, Oral motor problems as swallowing, eating, closing the mouth along with hearing, eyesight and delayed speech are some of the typical symptoms of a child with Cerebral palsy.

Viraat has got the impact on his speech apart from disoriented muscle tone. This intelligent and music loving child, who wants to dance on Honey Singh songs and loves his bits of intelligence (like flash cards), is unable to talk and walk due to the complications, when he was just about to enter this world from a mother’s womb.

Watch how Viraat is faring!

“After his birth until 2015, Viraat underwent Physio, speech and occupational therapies. He also had 40 sessions of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) in Mumbai. By this time, Viraat could only have good head holding and could work on his sitting abilities. All the other milestones are yet to achieve and a mom’s eye is waiting to see them flourish.

Harsha, Viraat’s mom says, we haven’t left any stone unturned. It has been a very emotional journey, being a mom, who wants to see her child, run, play in the ground, talk like other kids, dance to express the excitement and above all, feel like a a normal child. Harsha continues, It has been a very stressful journey, which embarked her on the doors of depression for a long time. With tears, she says, It is very upsetting to see your child in this state due to the negligence of the doctor. The happy moments to hold your baby in the arms for that warmth went away in the NICU for Viraat. Wish to undo the things and make it worth living happily, make it worth seeing your child enjoy the life rather than undergoing therapies.”

Causes of Cerebral Palsy :

Cerebral Palsy is a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is under development. Cerebral palsy affects the  muscle tone, movement (voluntary and involuntary), and motor skills (coordination). Lend a helping hand for one such child Viraat to help him with advanced therapies. #helpchild #cerebralpalsy #neurologicaldisorder

The major studies says that most of the time the damage to the Cerebrum (part of the brain) probably happens during the first 6 months of the pregnancy(due to infections, health problems, a genetic disorder) or during the birth and the major reasons could be :

1. Maternal Health :

Certain active pregnancy infections as German measles (rubella), Herpes, Cytomegalovirus (CMV), Zika virus, Chickenpox, can affect the foetus’s Nervous system and result in brain defects. While most of these infections can be prevented if a mom has had active vaccinations for some of these infections. To-be-moms, make sure you are properly vaccinated, discuss it with your gynaecologist.

2. High Impact toxins :

As methyl mercury, enhances the risk of birth defects. Keep your exposure low, indulge in organic or good quality foods, with less of toxins and pesticides. Avoid drugs, alcohol, tobacco during Pregnancy.

3. Newborn Infections :

Certain Bacterial and viral infections as meningitis, encephalitis and at times Jaundice, if goes severe and untreated, can risk a baby for Cerebral Palsy. Don’t delay any infection diagnosed. Ensure that your child is vaccinated against infections which cause meningitis, encephalitis, Pneumonia, Rubella and Chickenpox.

4. During Birth problems as :

  • Complicated labour or Delivery, wherein a baby may show respiratory problems at the time of birth. It usually happens when a baby is deprived of oxygen for a long time during birth or dropped or at times pulled out forcefully from vacuum extraction, or even a forceps injury. “Respiratory issues at the time of birth was the problem that pushed Viraat towards Cerebral Palsy.”
  • Premature birth, i.e. before 37 weeks, earlier a baby is born, greater the chances are there of Cerebral Palsy.
  • Low birth weight (less than 2.5 Kg) and further shedding the weight, more so in breech birth’s
  • Multiple babies have a higher risk for CP.

Treatment for Cerebral Palsy :

The saddest part of this disorder is that there is “NO CURE” of CP. Treatments and therapies can just help a child get independence. An early diagnosis and a right therapy set helps a child in basic motor and coordination skill development.

“Viraat is undergoing his treatment with Doman International Institute, Philadelphia, USA since October 2015. In a period of 2 months after the inception of treatment, Viraat started to crawl like a lizard. He was then made to creep like a horse that he still does so well, exclaims Harsha. Then he was then made to stand in a standing frame for hours and that was a turning point. He can now (at 6.5 years)stand holding a dowel, sofa, against wall. He can also stand for a few seconds independently. It’s a really big achievement for Viraat and his parents! “

Viraat is on an Intensive Treatment program, which requires his family of 3 had to go US once in every 6 months.The Institute is coming to India in October 2018 where they will be doing evaluations for Viraat and take lectures. His physical program consist of Standing, walking under the ladder; Intelligence program consist of reading Books, bits of Intelligence, Facilitated communication; Physiological program consist of different breathing programs along with nutrition. He is also undergoing Aqua therapy, to learn balancing. 

“Whenever Viraat steps his feet on floor, he wants to walk. This drives Harsha more to do something for him. He deserves to be independent just like all of us.”

Life Care Plan :

Cerebral Palsy is a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is under development. Cerebral palsy affects the  muscle tone, movement (voluntary and involuntary), and motor skills (coordination). Lend a helping hand for one such child Viraat to help him with advanced therapies. #helpchild #cerebralpalsy #neurologicaldisorder

As soon as the child is detected of Cerebral Palsy, a “Life care plan” needs to be established to support areas that need help, such as movements, learning, speech, hearing, Social and emotional development. This plan includes :

1. The accessories a child would need (as braces, wheelchair),

2. The therapies a child can undergo (basis individual needs) :

  • Sometimes surgery as Orthopaedic surgery can help in hips dislocation, spastic movements. 
  • Children will be given medication for stiffness and pain in the muscles
  • Occupational therapy, helps with day to day life activities as tying shoes, eating, social development
  • Diet therapy , so that children can focus on their diets which are rich in calcium, Vitamin D and Phosphorus.
  • Speech therapist, to help in the vocal and speech delays.
  • Educational program, to assist in a holistic educational plan, as many kids with CP are home-schooled (mostly in India)  

Harsha says, “As a parent with a special need child, we just can’t lose hope. I am trying to reach the stars and I know I will get there some day. God cannot be so unkind to Viraat and us. There are some more alternate therapies like Hippie therapy, Cranial Nerves, QRI Laser,  that we are thinking to try out in the future. If god closes one door, he certainly opens many more, and we have firm belief on this.” 

I’m sure with the small yet really big and challenging efforts Viraat and his family is doing, this little child, who was once declared immobile is sure to knock the doors of independence.

[I would like to know more advanced treatments for a Cerebral Palsy child, which can help Viraat’s parents know more about it. ]

Thanking Harsha for sharing her story with me and for being a really brave, loving and a patient mom serving her child.

Hoping, every child to live like a Prince!

Love Jhilmil


Real life of Viraat connected with the References :





Quest to live the life surrounded with the charming little bundle's of joy. When they speak, I sing, When they smile, I rejoice , When they hug, I hold them never to lose, Such is my passion for these Gifts of God.This love urged me to navigate separately from my Travel Blog & establish an "All-In-One" Blog for budding mothers. Mum's have multi-tasked this world ,with all her professional commitments , she still makes an extra effort to be a loving, caring and be an intellectual mommy! Cheers, for me too come from the same fraternity, post having a superb academics & close to 8 years of professional experience and blessed with a little one "who has indeed changed my life from Autumn to Spring";)

This Post Has 40 Comments

  1. Marek

    Hej, szczerze polecam oferte biura projektowego Sztuka Ogrodowa z Warszawy. Bardzo podoba mi sie ich profesjonalizm.
    U mnie zrobili super robote i jestem bardzo zadowolony z rezultatu (moge podeslac kilka zdjec mojego ogrodu)
    link do ich strony: http://sztuka-ogrodowa.com.pl/

  2. Tara

    Wow, thank you for sharing. I know a little about CP but not much, this is really eye opening, thank you.

  3. Princy Khurana

    this is such a detailed informative post. i did not know about Cerebral Palsy this much, and also would love to do my bit. will check Viraat

  4. Gurjeet Chhabra

    God, this disease no kid faces. So many things can cause cerebral palsy , I never knew. Some time I curse my doctor for c section but after reading post. I feel that is right decision, if my baby has come across problem like this then. I am not a strong mom.

  5. Kate

    This is very detailed and informative article. I’ve never heard and didn’t know about Cerebral Palsy anything before but your article explained a lot. Nature is a crazy thing.

  6. Charu Chhitwal

    This is such a sad scenario for any family. Every parent wants their kid to enjoy life to the fullest

  7. This post has triggered something in me. Being a mother, whose first pregnancy wasn’t fun at all. I know how important this blog post is. Sharing it further so that mothers to be read it.

  8. Akanksha

    Thank you for sharing detailed info about this condition and also story of Viraat. I have not heard of Cerebral palsy before so I’m sure there are many who don’t know as well. So glad I read your post.

  9. Priyanka Patwari

    Thanks for sharing the nice information. CP is a condition that affects muscle control and movement. It is usually caused by an injury to the brain before, during or after birth.

  10. Neha

    Viraat is living upto his name! Your post was extremely informative and helpful. I had no knowledge about cerebral palsy and your post was an enlightening one!

  11. Vasantha Vivek

    You are doing a priceless job. More power to you. Will check Viraat for sure. May he stay healthy and happy.

  12. Thank you for sharing so much information about cerebral palsy. VIRAAT and his parents are very brave. They have shown exceptional strength. Spreading the word.

  13. Papri Ganguly

    The sky has no limit, his story reminds me this. He is a brave boy.

  14. Simple Indian Mom

    Such an informative post it is.. I had little knowledge about CP. This is inspiring story i must say

  15. Jennifer Prince

    I have a friend and a cousin with CP. One is a super mild case and another a bit more extreme. I appreciate you bringing awareness to this condition!

  16. Geethica Mehra

    I wish luck to Viraat and his family. When they have done so much for their kid then their hard work is surely going to reward them soon

  17. Prerna

    Jhilmil, it’s a tough life for a parent but I have seen such parents are braver than anyone around and also value every moment spent. Thanks for sharing this post.

  18. Deepa

    This is very sad. It’s good to spread awareness but these things are not easy for any parent.

  19. Iya - Louisa

    I loved this post! I must admit that although it has been spoken about more I am still unsure about it! well until now haha. My nephew has autism and although certain needs change you must always remember they are just people who are just living their lives too and should be treated as such!

  20. viharin

    This is very informative article. God give strength and peace to the ones suffering. This article must be shared with everyone so that more precautions are taken before the baby birth

  21. EscapeWriters

    Harsha is really strong mother.. I never explain the respect in words for parents who have special need child. They just have to hide their pain and equally stay positive to grow their little one. Thanks for bringing such an insightful story!!!

  22. momsmethods

    Such detailed information… The change of Including special children into normal life is visible in the last decade or so and it is such a welcome change

  23. Elizabeth O

    This is a very informative article indeed! Harsha sounds like an amazing person and mother too. A very powerful read.

  24. Great useful information here. Many pregnant women are unaware of these health information. I am hearing about most of the information here for the first time myself. Harsha is a very strong woman.

  25. alpanadeo

    Never heard about Celebral Palsy. From your post, it seems to be quite a serious issue. I can understand how challenging it must be for Viraat’s family to handle this. When anything happens to our kids, parents get concerned then this is something big.

  26. Misha Varun Jain

    Support Viraat a kid and many more children like him, having cerebral palsy, which affects muscle tone, movement and motor skills, by emotional and financial support.

  27. Sayeri

    An emotional story of a mother’s journey. I had chickenpox during 7 weeks pregnancy. Doctor asked me to abort the baby. I didn’t at my own risk. Tell me how can I help him?

  28. Dalene Ekirapa

    It’s always sad to see young kids being dumb, mute or disabled because of cerebral palsy which is quite common. Anyway, Viraat’s program is just awesome!I wish there would be more like that over here.

  29. Some cases just break your heart… But it’s so important to understand the causes and implications as well as ways to make patients more comfortable

  30. brandon hudson

    My cousin has cerebral palsy and I see the struggles she deals with. From needing help to get up stairs from getting into a vehicle. She stills lives a very normal life, has a job she loves and has her own place. This post was very informative and helpful to those who may not understand the condition.

  31. Shilpa Garg

    One of our friend’s child has CP. Being parents to a child with CP is pretty challenging and demanding. Hope Viraat recovers and does well in his life. Thanks for sharing an informative post!

  32. Azlin Bloor

    Thank you for this very detailed post. While I am aware of cerebral palsy, I learnt so much by reading what you’ve written. My respect to all parents who have to cope with various challenges involving their kids.

  33. Roma

    My heart went out to Viraat a million times dear. Know if so many cases of doctor’s negligence. I trust Virat is able to walk any talk at the earliest.

  34. Akamatra

    It’s heartbreaking to see a smiling kid with such passion for life suffer. I wish them all the best in this journey!

  35. That’s great they are working to help people who suffer through this horrible thing. And it truly is horrific that there really is no cure for this.

  36. kallia

    Very eye opening article! I don’t know much about cerebral palsy, we need more information out there on it! It is a little disheartening that there is no cure yet.

  37. Jane Kelvin

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  38. kim

    Cerebral Palsy is so scary. I love that you’re bringing light to a sometimes very preventable disorder. Great information!

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