Cerebral Palsy: 15 Things You Didn’t Know

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Cerebral palsy is a disorder that many people talk about but few understand. Despite the fact that the disorder has spent a considerable amount of time in the spotlight and under the scrutiny of the public eye, there are still some things that many people don’t know. With that in mind, here we present our list of 15 things you probably didn’t know about cerebral palsy. Well, what are you waiting for? Check it out for yourself below!

Number Fifteen: Cerebral Palsy Is Not a Disease

The proper term for it is a disorder. It’s not a birth defect and it’s definitely not contagious, either.

Number Fourteen: It’s More Common Than You Think

In fact, it’s the most common motor disability in children. Approximately three in every 1,000 children are diagnosed with the disorder.

Number Thirteen: There’s No One Right Way to Diagnose It

Despite the fact that it’s the most common motor disability in children, there is no one correct way to diagnose cerebral palsy. Most doctors are able to diagnose children by studying their movement, development, and speaking with parents.

Number Twelve: There Are Several Different Kinds

Most people think CP is one disorder; however, it’s actually a group of varying disorders. The most common kind of cerebral palsy is spastic CP, which involves the muscles being particularly stiff. Other types include ataxic CP, which causes problems related to coordination, and athetoid CP, which causes either slow movements or fast and jerky movements.

Number Eleven: It’s on a Continuum

Not every child diagnosed with the disorder will experience it to the same degree. While some people who have the disorder can walk perfectly fine and have perfect speech, others are confined to wheelchairs and struggle to form a single word.

Number Ten: It Affects All Muscle Groups

Most people might not think about this, but cerebral palsy can affect a person’s ability to swallow. All muscles related to motor control can be affected by the disorder.

Number Nine: It Can Change Over Time

Even if a child is diagnosed with the disorder, the disorder itself isn’t immutable. The severity often changes as a child grows – it can either improve or worsen. The disorder also changes depending on weather and mood.

Number Eight: There’s No Cure

Despite its prevalence, there is no known cure for CP. Very little research has been done, and this is likely due to funding issues.

Number Seven: It Doesn’t Affect a Child’s Personality

Many people might see a child with CP and assume his or her personality has been subdued because of it. However, this isn’t the case at all! Children with CP have vibrant personalities – it’s only their physical exterior that has been disabled.

Number Six: People With CP Don’t Want a Pity Party

It’s easy to look at a young child with CP and feel sorry, but parents of children with CP would rather you take that pity party elsewhere. Kids with cerebral palsy face marked challenges, yes, but it’s a part of who they are and helps them build character

Number Five: It Can Take Years to Diagnose

This is quite exceptional, but some people don’t know they have cerebral palsy until they’re as old as 13. However, if a 13-year-old has it and doesn’t know it, chances are he or she is on the low end of the symptom spectrum.

Number Four: It’s a Sexist Disorder

More males are diagnosed with the disorder than females, and to quite a significant degree. For every 100 females diagnosed, 135 males are diagnosed.

Number Three: Many People With CP Were Born Prematurely

It’s no secret that babies born prematurely are vulnerable to a host of extra issues, but this is quite shocking. Incredibly, half of all people diagnosed with the disorder were born prematurely.

Number Two: More People Are Being Diagnosed Every Day

This is sad but true. Every year, more and more people are diagnosed with the often debilitating disorder. More and more treatments are being developed every year to combat the disorder as well.

Number One: People With CP Are Generally Really Smart

An impressive 60 percent of people with CP have normal or above average intelligence. We hope you enjoyed our list of 15 things you didn’t know about cerebral palsy!

Cerebral Palsy: 7 Famous People Who Have It


Cerebral palsy is a disorder that affects the muscles, motion, and motor skills. The disorder is most commonly caused by brain damage. CP affects about three out of every 1000 births, and at this time, there is no known cure. The effects range from a mild limp to severe speech and movement issues. Here are some famous people with CP.

Number Seven: Josh Blue

Josh Blue is a stand-up comic from the USA. The star uses his self-deprecating humor, and challenges people to get over pre-conceived notions about people with CP.


Number Six: Abbey Nicole Curran

Curran made history when she became the very first Miss USA participant with a disability in ’08. She also started something called the Miss You Can Do It Pageant for girls with special needs, using her status to give back and help others.


Number Five: Bonner Paddock and Cerebral Palsy

Bonner Paddock wasn’t diagnosed until he was 11 years old, and up until then, played sports as if he didn’t even possess physical limitations. This impressive man was the first person with cerebral palsy to reach the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro without help.


Number Four: Dan Keplinger

This man is an artist, as well as a motivational speaker. He developed the disability due to complications with his birth. His artwork has been shown in a few different galleries across America.


Number Three: Geri Jewell

Geri Jewell is an actress, comic, writer, and public speaker who has won national recognition. This was for being the first individual with cerebral palsy to be cast in a TV series.


Number Two: Christy Brown

This impressive man was a painter, poet and author born in Ireland. He had a severe case of palsy. With the help of his mom, he eventually learned how to read, write, and talk. He wrote an autobiography and had a film made about him.


Number One: RJ Mitte

We all know this guy from Breaking Bad. His career with acting began in 2006 when he moved to LA. Here, he started working with a talent agent with hopes of spreading awareness about CP. Thanks for reading our list, and we hope you enjoyed it.

Cerebral Palsy: Top 5 Possible Causes of the Disorder

Cerebral palsy is a general title used to define a group of chronic disorders. These “palsies” inhibit a person’s control over their own movement as a result of brain damage. This typically happens as the brain is still developing. Cerebral palsy typically develops and becomes apparent by toddlerhood. This is a nonprogressivedisorder, which means that the damage present in the brain does not get worse as the person grows older. Regardless of this, the symptoms associated with the damage have a tendency to change as time progresses. At times, they get better, and others they get worse. It’s one of the more common causes of disabilities in children. Here are some of the five common causes of this disorder.

Number Five: A Mother Experiencing Infection During Pregnancy

An expecting mother having an infection while she is pregnant increases the risk for damage to the child’s unformed nervous system. This could be anything from rubella to cytomegalovirus (similar to the herpes virus) or infections caused by parasites. Unfortunately, many of these types of infections go undetected.

Number Four: Infant Jaundice Can Cause Cerebral Palsy

Jaundice is a sickness that is caused by an overabundance of bilirubin in the bloodstream. The job of the liver is to filter this out. Many times, infants’ livers do not do this effectively right from birth, making jaundice quite common for newborns in the days after birth. In the majority of cases, a specific type of light therapy will clear this up, leaving no detrimental effects. In rare or untreated cases, however, this sickness can cause damage to the brain.

Number Three: Rh Incompatibility

Sometimes, a new mother and her baby share differing Rh types, leading the mother’s body to attempt to destroy the developing fetus’s blood cells. This can lead to a type of jaundice and in serious cases damage to the brain and CP.

Number Two: Traumatic Birth

Some births are physically and metabolically traumatizing for the baby, at times including head trauma. This can lead to damage to the brain of the fetus.

Number One: Oxygen Deprivation

Oxygen deprivation is possible during labor, which can cause cerebral palsy. Thanks for reading.

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