Children’s physiotherapy

Children's Physiotherapist working with child
  • John Parkes Unit, Torbay Hospital: 01803 655547
  • Mayfield School, Torquay: 01803 329056
  • Bidwell Brook, Dartington: 01803 864120

Our aim is to provide a quality, friendly and child centred service for children and young people (aged 0-18), living within the Torbay and South Devon area.

We aim to treat everyone with respect, in a timely and efficient way using current best evidence and practices.

We will value every patient as an individual regardless of their needs and backgrounds and aim to work together with families and other professionals to help each child, and young person, reach their full potential.

Our team is made up of qualified chartered physiotherapists and physiotherapy technicians who have specialist experience of working with children and young people. Our team is available Monday to Friday and there is an answerphone service for all other times.

We work independently but some of our clinics are also run alongside orthotists, paediatricians, orthopaedic surgeons and other health professionals.

What conditions do we work with?

  • Children who are not meeting their motor milestones. For example who are not rolling by 6 months or sitting by 8 months. If you’re not sure about your child’s milestones take a look at NHS Choices’ Birth to five development timeline
  • Children with Cerebral Palsy or other neurological and neuro-muscular conditions
  • Follow up for premature babies born before 32 weeks
  • Musculoskeletal conditions in younger children such as hypermobility that is causing pain or limiting function, Torticollis, Plagiocephaly and Erb’s Palsy. For further information on some of these conditions please see Hypermobility, Torticollis and Plagiocephaly, and Plagiocephaly

Some conditions are more appropriate to be seen in the main outpatient physiotherapy department and your referral may be re-directed to them.

  • Normal variations of walking e.g. tiptoe walking. Some types of walking are considered normal in children, for more information on this please look at the following leaflets: Intoeing gait and Flat Feet. If after reading this information you are still concerned then we would be happy to assess your child.
  • Children with possible Developmental Coordination Disorders (DCD)
  • We do not routinely see children with respiratory difficulties, unless they are already known to our service due to a pre-existing, complex condition
  • Children with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and chronic Pain – services for these children are run jointly with Clinical Psychology

What to expect when your child is referred to Physiotherapy?

We only accept referrals from GPs, Paediatricians and other therapists. When we receive a referral we will write to you to acknowledge this and to invite you to contact us. Once you have made contact your child will be placed on to our prioritised waiting list and a Physiotherapist will then contact you to offer an appointment.

We offer appointments at several locations depending on where you live – if you have a preference please let us know. These include; The John Parkes Unit (Torbay Hospital Annexe), Newton Abbot Hospital, Brixham Hospital, Totnes Hospital, Dartmouth Clinic, Mayfield Special School, and Bidwell Brook Special School. We can also offer appointments at your child’s nursery or school setting and at home if appropriate.

Useful resources

Normal development

Every child will develop in their own way and in their own time. The following links will provide some guidance of what could be expected and what play ideas can be used to help.

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