Cerebral Palsy is the most common form of childhood disability in America, affecting nearly 1 out of every 500 births and as many as a million young people at any given time.
Cerebral palsy is a devastating condition that affects around 1 in every 1,000 babies born in the United States each year. And, approximately 800,000 to 1 million people, mostly children, are currently living with CP on a day-to-day basis.
The use of horses to treat those with physical and mental disabilities (link to birth injury page), also known as equine-assisted therapy (EAT), or hippotherapy, is a practice that has been around for centuries.
Children afflicted with the most severe forms of cerebral palsy face a higher likelihood of developing the spine condition scoliosis. Although this can be treated with surgery, there are risks for complications within the first year.
An estimated 75% of the 10,000 children diagnosed with cerebral palsy each year will have a form called spastic cerebral palsy, which is characterized by chronic muscle tightness that makes movement and coordination difficult.
Oxygen deprivation, or hypoxia, during delivery is a well-known cause for brain damage in infants that can lead to disorders like cerebral palsy. It is also known that low pH levels (high body acid) at birth can lead to complications including brain damage and CP.