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Hypotonia – Is My Child Just Weak?

When our children have hypotonia, they lack the musculature tension required to help keep their body upright. Hypotonia is a condition where there is decreased muscle tone within the body. Muscle tone is the amount of resistance or tension in our muscles when they are at rest. Muscle strength is the amount of force a muscle exerts against resistance. Muscle weakness and muscle tone are different things, however they can both affect one another. Gaining strength will not necessarily increase one’s tone. 

Grip strength, speech, digestion, swallowing, breathing, sitting and standing are all areas that are impacted by hypotonia. No two kids with low tone will present exactly the same. Each child will have their own needs that need to be taken into consideration. Interventions are dependent on the activities/actions with which the child is struggling. 

Some examples of areas for improvement: 

Neck Control – physio exercises 

Trunk Support – physio, TheraTogs, spinal bracing 

Ankle and Leg Support – physio, orthotic bracing 


There are various orthotic devices available to children or adults with hypotonia that will help provide them with the additional support they require to sit, crawl, stand and develop. Most commonly, someone may require a custom foot orthosis or supramalleolar orthosis (SMO) to provide static standing support, medial/lateral stability and to maintain proper foot biomechanics and alignment. By providing these individuals with the fundamental stability to stand and walk, we will help them achieve their personal goals. If you have any questions or concerns or feel your child may have low tone, please do not hesitate to reach out to our office and we would be happy to provide a complimentary assessment and evaluate your child on an individual basis.


The Custom Orthotics Team (519) 850-4721 | office@customorthoticsoflondon.com | @cool_bracing


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