Hi, I do not see a lot of discussion on these essential services.  How can I convince my nephew of the importance in his 20s to continue to try moving his muscles daily and receiving help from professionals? Please tell me what you do. Thank you. Worried aunt.

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Hello Sharon,

I'm glad to read of your interest in this subject and concern for your nephew.  PT and OT can be useful in maintaining function and range of motion as well as help alleviate pain caused by joint contractures.  Improved range of motion can make it easier for others to care for a person who had DMD when it comes to helping them get dressed and improves their overall comfort being able to sit and lay in a more natural position.  There are other benefits not listed.  Those are the arguments for continuing therapy.  

A man in his 20s may understand and believe this, yet still avoid this therapy for a number of reasons.  For some it may be "inconvenient" or they may be satisfied with how things are and not wish to 'rock the boat'.  Providing a reasoned argument to continue receiving these services may convince your nephew to reconsider, but at his age, he may decide against it.  Urging him is one way to try to get him to get PT, but that only goes so far.  The usual ways we try to influence others will fail when it comes to self help.  Shame, anger and guilt will only push a person further away from the desired outcome.  Because of this, it makes a great argument for making stretching, wearing braces and getting PT and OT part of a regular daily or weekly plan early, so as a person gets older it's part of their daily routine.  

I appreciate your concern and really hope you are able to convince your nephew that PT should be part of his overall care.  Yes, it takes time away from the other things he prefers to do, but in the long run he may be able to do those things longer and with less discomfort receiving these services.

I wish you all the best and good luck convincing your nephew.  After that, it's really up to him.

Brian

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