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#TechThursdays- New motion tracking device to identify motor deficits in children

In our weekly feature #TechThursdays, we turn the spotlight on a motion tracking device that helps identify motor deficits in children.

Most of the times, parents fail to diagnose developmental disorders in their child at a young age. Since it goes undetected, children with developmental disorders are not given the right therapies which leads to many other problems in course of time. Now, a group of researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine has developed a device that is going to revolutionise the way motor deficits are detected in children. This wrist watch like device can be worn by the child around the clock. It helps to study motor deficits, helping parents to diagnose it at a young age itself.

The researchers point out that there are many babies who suffer mild strokes due to which they become disabled. Since this happens a few weeks after the birth, even parents or doctors might fail to notice it. Sometimes these strokes cause the child to lose control over one side of their body. They will undergo problems in doing day to day life tasks.

Ruby Singh, Founder of ALFAA School in Bengaluru says that this device is a great way to reach out to both parents and children.

Anything that helps to detect motor deficits in children is truly a great thing. Parents and children usually go through a long journey when the child is detected with a developmental disorder. Assessment takes time and can be traumatic as well. No parent would want to go through all that. Some of them even feel guilty that their child was not diagnosed at a young age. If this device comes down to India, it is going to benefit many-Ruby Singh, Founder, ALFAA

The study was conducted on infants as young as two months old to teenagers who are 17 years of age. They were made to wear the tracker for over four days while sleeping, bathing and even eating. This helped researchers to get a better insight into how motor deficits can be detected in the child. Movement of the arm and other parts of the body were reflected on the device.

"I think this is going to be useful for children with brain damage that usually goes unnoticed. Early diagnosis and intervention can go a long way in improving their quality of life, says Prerna Khanna, Special Educator and parent of child with cerebral palsy.

This device is going to be of immense help to new parents as well. If this is brought down to India, it is truly going to have many takers.

ALSO READ: #TechThursdays - Smartphone-based therapy & hearing aid could prove a game changer for the deaf community

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