Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a biological disorder that affects how the brain functions and works. People with ADHD often have trouble paying attention, sitting still, and controlling their behavior. Symptoms start in childhood, and often continue into adulthood.

Angelman Syndrome

Angelman syndrome (AS) is a rare genetic disorder marked by a happy nature with lots of laughter, trouble with movement and balance, delays in reaching developmental milestones, severe intellectual disabilities, and sometimes seizure disorders. With treatment, a child with AS can learn many skills to help them through life.


Apraxia is a speech disorder where children have problems saying sounds, syllables, and words. The condition happens when there is a disruption between the brain and the muscles around the mouth needed to produce speech.

Articulation Disorders

A child may have an articulation [ahr-tik-yuh-LEY-shun] disorder when they have more trouble saying words the right way than they should for their age. If a child is not outgrowing the way they talked when they were little to mimic adult speech, speech therapy may help.

Aspergers Syndrome

Asperger’s syndrome is part of a related group of brain disorders called autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). ASDs make it hard for a person to communicate and interact with others.


Ataxia [uh-TAK-see-uh] is loss of muscle coordination. It’s a condition of the nervous system that can cause unsteady walking, slurred speech, random eye movement, and tremors. Ataxia can be part of a genetic (inherited) disease or it can be a symptom of another health condition.

Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder

Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder (ANSD) is a hearing disorder that affects how the brain receives sounds from the ears. A problem in the inner ear (cochlea) or with the hearing (auditory) nerve causes sound signals to become distorted before they reach the brain. The disorder can cause partial or total hearing loss.


Autism is a developmental disorder that makes it difficult for a person to communicate and interact with others. Symptoms of autism are usually present in early childhood.

Autism Spectrum Disorder

Autism [AW-tiz-uhm] spectrum disorder (ASD) is a brain disorder that affects each child in a different way and makes it hard for them to interact and communicate with others. Many therapies and medicines are available to treat ASD. Treatment can help lessen symptoms and allow your child to live a full, happy life.


Camptodactyly is an abnormal bending of the finger that has genetic causes. It can be treated with an operation, physical therapy, or splinting.
A physician meets with a teenage girl.

Cardiac Rehabilitation

Cardiac rehabilitation is a program to help children who have a congenital heart defect or other heart problems. Cardiac rehabilitation will often focus on exercise, diet, and weight management.

Central Auditory Processing Disorder

Central auditory processing disorder is when a child has trouble telling the difference between similar sounds. Children with an auditory processing disorder don’t have a hearing or attention problem, but trouble interpreting sounds.

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy occurs when the brain does not develop normally while a baby develops in the womb. It causes problems with movement, including poor muscle coordination, weakness and stiffness.

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is pain that lasts or comes and goes for months or more. In children and teens this pain usually involves headaches, stomach aches, or pain in the bones and joints. If your child suffers from chronic pain, healthcare providers have a number of ways to treat it.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) in children, is marked by severe pain, often in a leg, that is greater than expected for their condition. The child also has a problem with a basic body function such as body temperature or sensitivity to touch.

Congenital Musculoskeletal Defects

A congenital musculoskeletal [KAHN-jen-ih-TUHL MUHS-kyuh-loh-SKEL-i-tl] defect is when a baby’s bones or muscles do not develop properly as they are growing in the mother’s womb, so the child is born with a birth defect. Common defects affect the skull and face, spine, hands, hips, legs, and feet.


Deconditioning [dee-kuhn-DIH-shun-ing] happens when the body does not get enough exercise due to inactivity or needed bedrest. It tends to be a long-term process, and it puts your child at risk for future problems.

Developmental Delays

A developmental delay is when a child does not reach developmental milestones at expected times. These milestones include speech and language skills, motor skills such as crawling and walking, and cognitive (thinking) skills.

Difficulty with Daily Living Activities

Difficulty with the activities of daily living means that a child has problems bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring (moving), and/or eating by themselves. This can happen because of many different conditions. These problems can sometimes be treated by fixing the underlying condition, or with different kinds of therapy.

Difficulty with Handwriting (Dysgraphia)

Difficulty with handwriting is a symptom of a learning disability sometimes called dysgraphia. The disability may also affect spelling and a child’s ability to put thoughts on paper.

Difficulty with Independent Living Skills

The activities of daily living are basic tasks that healthy children of the right age can do by themselves, including bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring, and eating. Children can have difficulty with these activities as a result of injuries, illnesses, disabilities, and other conditions.

Down Syndrome

Down syndrome is a common genetic condition that occurs when a person has an extra copy or part of an extra copy of chromosome 21.


Dysarthria [dis-AHR-three-uh] is a condition in which nerve damage or muscle weakness can affect your child’s ability to speak. This can be caused by injury or other disorders that damage the nerves or muscles of the brain, face, or mouth, and affect your child’s ability to form words.


Dyspraxia [dis-PRAK-see-uh] is a disorder where a child cannot plan and carry out tasks well. Your child may seem uncoordinated, clumsy and have trouble with many parts of daily life.


Dystonia is a movement disorder that children and adults can develop. Types include cervical or focal dystonia. Treatment depends on severity of symptoms.

Erb’s Palsy Brachial Plexus Injury

Erb’s palsy is a weakness or paralysis of an arm or hand due to injury to the brachial plexus nerves that go from the spinal cord into the arm.

Expressive Language Disorder

With expressive language disorder, your child has trouble talking and being understood, but they may understand what you say and what they read.

Feeding Difficulties

A child or baby may have a feeding problem when they can’t eat or drink, or can’t eat and drink enough of the right things to stay healthy. Feeding difficulties have a range of causes but treatment can make eating a safer, healthier, and happier experience.

Fine Motor Delay

This article explains what happens when a child has a fine motor delay, how the doctor will check for it, and when parents need to take action. A fine motor delay means that the child has difficulty coordinating small movements of the hands, fingers, and mouth (for speech).

Flat Feet

Just like adults, children can have bunions and fallen arches. There are many nonsurgical treatments for flat feet, such as insoles that offer arch support.

Gait Abnormalities

Your child’s abnormal gait, or ataxic gait, may be caused by foot pain or another underlying condition. Read about gait ataxia treatment options.

Gross Motor Delay

Gross motor delay is when a child isn't meeting age-specific development milestones such as rolling, crawling, walking, or speaking. A pediatric specialist can help determine if the delay is caused by a condition such as torticollis or autism, and recommend therapies.


Children often get a raspy voice or a hoarse throat from a temporary problem like a cold or even from yelling and screaming on the playground. If the voice problems continue for a few weeks, see a healthcare provider to rule out more serious voice problems and to get treatment.


It’s normal for the spine to curve, but children who have too much curve in their lower back may have hyperlordosis [HAHY-per lawr-DOH-sis]. Hyperlordosis is also called swayback.


Hypernasality is a condition in which air flows through the nose during speech and makes the voice sound like it’s coming through the nose. It happens with the structures or muscles in the mouth and nose misdirect the airflow when speaking.


Hypertonia is a condition in which there is too much muscle tone. This can make it difficult for a child to move their arms or legs.


Hyponasality is a speech problem caused when too little air escapes from the nose and mouth while a child is talking. It often sounds like the child has a stuffy nose when speaking.


Hypotonia [hy-puh-toh-NEE-uh] occurs when children have low muscle tone. It’s often a sign of another serious condition like muscular dystrophy or down syndrome.

Joint Pain

Some mild or quickly passing joint pain in children is normal. More serious symptoms, such as stiffness, swelling, redness, fatigue, and illness, may be early signals of a disease, such as juvenile arthritis, that requires immediate medical treatment.


Kyphosis is the medical term for a rounded curve in the upper spine. It is sometimes called “hunchback” or round back. In most cases it does not require treatment.

Language Delay

Children with a language delay take longer than usual to reach language milestones. Language abilities include the expressing thoughts and understanding what others say.

Muscular Dystrophy

Muscular dystrophy [MUS-kyu-luhr DYS-truh-fee] is a disease that stops the body from creating certain proteins, leading to weak muscles and symptoms including trouble breathing, eating, and walking. While there is no cure for this disease, there are treatments that can slow it down and make it easier for your child to live with the symptoms it causes.

Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD)

Find information and articles related to pervasive developmental disorders (PDD).


Phonological Disorders

Phonological disorders are a type of speech disorder. Children who have this disorder do not use some speech sounds and mispronounce certain words.


Plagiocephaly is a condition in which a baby’s head is not shaped correctly. It is also sometimes called flat-head syndrome.
A physician meets with a teenage girl.

Post Fracture Recovery

Fractures in children can be quite different than fractures in adults and typically require less healing time. The approach to treatment can also be different depending on the type of fracture your child has.

Post Orthopedic Surgery Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation after orthopedic surgery helps your child move more easily, get stronger, and be more independent. Learn how rehabilitation works.

Pulmonary Rehabilitation

Pulmonary rehab, short for pulmonary rehabilitation, is a program for children with moderate to severe lung diseases. Although PR is for anyone with a lung disease, there are different programs for different people, such as children, adults, and the elderly.

Receptive Language Disorder

A receptive language disorder is a condition in which a child has trouble making sense of spoken or written language.

Rett Syndrome

Rett syndrome is a rare genetic disorder that mostly affects girls with an onset of symptoms between the ages of 3 months to 3 years old. The condition causes nervous system problems and developmental delays, including loss of speech and movement skills.

Selective Mutism

Selective mutism [MYOO-tiz-uhm] is a complex childhood disorder in which a child is able to speak, but suddenly stops speaking in certain social settings. The causes are not specifically known, but it is likely a result of extreme social fear and anxiety.

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

Sensorineural [sen-SUH-ree-NOOR-uhl] hearing loss happens when the hair cells of the inner ear are damaged and disrupt the nerve signals to the brain. This kind of hearing loss can be present at birth or acquired later in your child’s life.

Sensory Integration Dysfunction

Sensory integration dysfunction is when a child is not able to manage information coming in through their senses.

Social Skills Dysfunction

Social and communication problems for children fall under the umbrella of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). People with ASD have delayed or underdeveloped social skills. Some of these social as well as organizational issues come from a lack of executive functioning abilities.


Spasticity is a condition that makes the muscles stiff and tense. Treatments include physical therapy, medicine, and help for the underlying causes.

Speech and Sound Disorders

Speech sound disorders are problems with saying certain words or sounds correctly. Children may have trouble using their muscles to make the right sounds or choosing the right sounds to say.

Spinal Cord Injury

The spinal cord is the central nerve that enables the brain and body to send messages. When your child’s spinal cord is injured, those messages are disrupted. Doctors can help your child to manage pain; they can also use therapies to restore your child’s quality of life.

Spinal Muscular Atrophy

Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) affects muscle movements, for example in a child’s arms or legs, that your child could normally control, such as when walking or reaching for something.


Stuttering is a speech disorder in which a child has trouble with the smooth flow of speech. People who stutter know what they want to say, but have trouble saying it because the flow if speech is disrupted.

Toe Walking

Walking on the toes or the balls of the feet is normal in toddlers who are learning to walk. If your child walks on their toes most of the time after age 3, it still may be a habit they will outgrow. In a few cases it could be a sign of another health condition.

Tongue Thrust

A tongue thrust is when the tongue pushes against or between the teeth while your child is at rest, swallowing, or talking. It is normal in babies, and children usually outgrow it by age six.


Torticollis is a rare medical problem in which muscle spasms cause the neck to twist and the head to tilt to one side.

Tourette Syndrome

Tourette [too-RET] syndrome is a neurological (brain and nervous system) disorder that causes uncontrollable movements or sounds, called tics.

Velopharyngeal Dysfunction

Velopharyngeal dysfunction (VPD) or insufficiency is a speech disorder caused by a problem with the structures of the mouth and throat.

Visual Perception and Visual Motor Dysfunctions

Children with visual perception and visual motor dysfunction have trouble with visual processing — making sense of what they see. They often have good eyesight but have trouble understanding and responding to what they see.

Vocal Cord Paralysis

Vocal cord paralysis is when your child can’t move their vocal cords, the muscles used to talk. They need to open for your child to breathe and close to swallow.

Vocal Nodules

Vocal cord nodules are small growths on a child’s vocal cords. Vocal cord nodules are most commonly caused by vocal cord abuse or overuse or a medical condition.