4 yr old son always falling - FamilyEducation
4 yr old son always falling
12/04/2008 at 15:08 PM

Hi everyone,

For those who don't know me, I'm a mom of 2 boys ages 5 & 4. My oldest has some developmental issues. My younger son has never been diagnosed w/ any problems, but I do still have some concerns. I'm always watchful of my younger son after experiencing certain developmental problems w/ my 5 yr old.
Here's the problem: My 4 yr old is always tripping over his feet, falling out of his chair and banging into things. It's almost like a balance problem where he'll be standing one minute, then suddenly he'll collapse for no apparent reason. We brought him for a PT eval, but the PT didn't voice any major concerns. She said my son has slightly low muscle tone (like my older son) but nothing to worry about. She gave us practice exercises to work on at home w/ him. He, unlike my older son, did not qualify for PT.
My younger son has no academic problems, and he's doing great in school. We noticed he has some fine motor issues and possibly even some sensory issues, since he's always touching EVERYTHING! He's also very active and sometimes needs to be redirected to stay on task (similar to his brother). Other than that, he's a normal 4 yr old boy.
We set up an appt for an OT eval as well, but we haven't gone yet. I may be over-reacting, but w/ all the concerns w/ my older son, I didn't want to ignore this.
My next thought is to maybe bring my 4 yr old to an ENT to have his ears ck'd. Who knows? This cld maybe a an equalibrium problem.
So that's where I'm at now w/ this. Does anybody have any other suggestions or input that might be helpful. It's possible that this is nothing, but like I mentioned before, I don't want to ignore this if it is something of concern.

ENT would be a good start. If nothing is found by the ENT, ask to be referred to a neurologist.

How is his vision?

Thx, SnglDad. Just curious why you suggested a neurologist. Cld this be something more serious? We have a neurologist that we saw for my older son, so if all else fails, we'll make an appt to see him.

Hi acitez, Forgot to mention the vision problem. Thx for bringing that up. Both of my boys have a slight astigmatism, confirmed by a Pediatric Opthamologist. My oldest wears glasses, but my younger guy doesn't need them at this time. We were originally refered to this dr after developmental concerns w/ my 5 yr old. I mentioned the falling, but after examining my 4 yr old's eyes, the dr didn't voice any concerns.

I'd go back to the ophthamologist and ask specifically for them to check for Visual Midline Shift Syndrome (treatable). Simplest issue if you notice ADD -- ADD kids generally have more balance issues. If you go to the ENT - they can check for vertigo, which is very common actually and can be treated by retraining system to compensate for inner ear imbalances. If it's an inner ear imbalance - you may just try treating with diet first: (1) fluids (no sodas or high salt) consistently throughout the day (2) no MSG, no to low salt (3) regularly spaced meals and snacks (low salt) on a strict schedule. Caffeine also makes the problems worse if it's inner ear. KEEP INVOLVED! You are the mom and know what you feel is right and wrong. You may be overly sensitive because of your older son, but you also may be dead-on in recognizing a problem early enough to do something about it. Keep plugging away to figure out something.

Carebear5, Thx so much for all your suggestions. I didn't realize this cld be so involved. Mostly I'm told by both drs and others that some kids are just clutsy. Of course I'm more concerned b/c of my older son's issues, but I wasn't sure if I was over-reacting. I will definitely rule everything out as you've said. Thx again.

Although there is probably nothing to worry about, there is always the possibility that it could be something more serious. I would get with that neurologist just to rule out anything serious. Personally, I would address this first.

Hi concerned mom. What was the end results?? . I am encountering the same problem with my almost 4 year old girl. Let me know Thanks