Pediatric Therapy is a Work of HeART

Playing is how children learn the foundation for aca­demic skills such as math­ematics, reading, writing and social skills. It’s their main occupation and consumes the majority of their days.

When a child cannot play or participate in activities, physical, emotional and social issues can develop. Seeking help early is the best first step parents can make. For many families, a pediatric therapist can be a valuable resource.

Benefits of Therapy

Pediatric therapists treat children with cerebral palsy, autism, developmental delay, coordination disorders, feed­ing problems, sensory process­ing disorders, and general fine or gross motor delays.

Children benefit from ther­apy in different ways, some more than others. A pediat­ric therapist can perform an evaluation and make recom­mendations if a child struggles with play or performing daily activities. Pediatric therapists use developmentally appropri­ate play to enhance a child’s skills. They provide each child with the best opportunity pos­sible to participate fully in play activities and social experi­ences.

Room for Inspiration: Mural Enhances Pediatric Therapy Treatment Space

The skilled therapists in Methodist Therapy’s pediat­ric services department are experts at making treatment time feel like play time for the young patients who visit them routinely. And now, thanks to one of these therapists, the pediatric therapy department has received a kid-friendly update with a special wall mu­ral to inspire children to reach their goals and embrace their uniqueness.

Kellie Hudgens, a certi­fied occupational therapy assistant, is the artist behind the colorful mural. Several parents commented that the large blank wall in the lobby area leading to the gym space was lackluster. The therapist­s had considered enhancing the space for a long time, and with support from Method­ist’s administrative team and with Hudgens’ creative talent, the dream became reality.

Over the course of sev­eral weeks, Hudgens came in on her free time to create the mural, which features a woodland motif sprinkled with inspirational quotes pro­moting diversity, individual­ity, encouragement and most importantly, love. Embedded within the design are actual handprints of patients and staff. The prints bring a genu­ine feeling of life and unity to the artwork. The mural, one of many Hudgens has cre­ated, was a parting gift to her patients and co-workers with Methodist Therapy Center. She now shares her therapy skills with students in the Maryville City School sys­tem.

“It was such a tough deci­sion to leave,” said Hudgens. “My patients, the parents and my co-workers at Methodist are just the best.”

Methodist Pediatric Thera­py is excited to have a treat­ment space that now feels as inspiring as the young patients who use it. For more informa­tion, call Methodist Therapy Services at (865) 835-3370 or click here.

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