7 Misconceptions About Hypotonia

by Aculbertson

Hypotonia is complicated.

Anyone who’s tried explaining it to friends and family knows that’s true. So it’s not surprising when misconceptions pop up.

Here are seven of the most common:


Kids With Hypotonia Just Aren’t Trying

Hardheaded. Lazy. Stubborn. Whatever word is used doesn’t take into account the realities of hypotonia. These kids are FIGHTERS. Just because they don’t follow a specific timeline doesn’t mean they aren’t making huge strides. Throw out the unrealistic expectations. Enjoy the inchstones.


Kids With Hypotonia Are Weak

It’s easy to confuse muscle tone with muscle weakness. But they’re not the same thing. Kids with hypotonia can actually be very strong. Low tone refers to a decreased level of tension in the muscles. Basically, they’re too relaxed. So as you can imagine, that makes something like standing extra difficult.



Kids With Hypotonia Will Outgrow It

Seeing your child walk seems to suggest that low tone is in the past. It’s not. Muscles can get stronger or weaker, but the tone doesn’t really change. Kids with hypotonia become adults with hypotonia. Along the way, they’ve simply learned how to compensate for their limitations. But without proper treatment, they can develop poor alignment and other long-term problems.



Kids With Hypotonia Are Lazy

Hypotonia is exhausting. That’s because low tone muscles work overtime just to keep up. Think of it as having to get up off the couch over and over and over again. So sometimes extra breaks, accommodations, and stroller rides are just necessary.



Kids With Hypotonia Have Their Diagnosis

This can get confusing but think of it as a symptom instead of a cause. It’s the runny nose, not the common cold. Unless your child has benign congenital hypotonia, something else is responsible for the decreased muscle tone. Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and a genetic disorder are all examples. Finding the root cause isn’t guaranteed, but it can help shape your child’s treatment.



Kids With Hypotonia Will Never [fill in the blank]

As you watch your child struggle to lift his or her head, milestones like walking, running, and having a career seem impossible. Stay strong. Childhood obstacles don’t necessarily dictate the future. Of course, nothing is guaranteed. And the severity of hypotonia can vary greatly. But with persistence and the right treatment, chances are your child will soar.


Kids With Hypotonia Don’t Need Help

There are late bloomers and there are kids held back by physical limitations. There’s a difference. No one wants to slap labels on their child. But ignoring the obstacles doesn’t make them go away. Therapy appointments and orthotics aren’t what you envisioned for your child, but getting support at a young age is the best way to help your little one thrive.


To learn more about treatment options, such as Surestep’s innovative line of products, talk to your pediatrician or physical therapist.



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