Published: April 7, 2015

Barlow Books is delighted to announce that we will be a publishing a groundbreaking new book about baby brains.

The author, neonatologist Karen Pape, makes a provocative and inspiring argument: If adult brains can change and recover from injury, baby brains can do so as well. You would think this is a no-brainer. Baby brains grow and change at a remarkable rate. Yet when babies are born with brain damage, the system tells parents there’s nothing much they can do, at least for the first few years of their children’s lives.

Parents of children diagnosed with cerebral palsy, for example, are often informed that kids in CP will have to live with the awkward movements we associate with that disorder. Yet Pape, a clinical neuroscientist who has imported the latest learnings about the changing brain into her lifelong practice, says the system is giving parents bad advice.

Baby brains do change and recover. She points to the kids she has seen over the last 40 years. Lots of boys with CP, for instance, can’t walk well, but they can run and play soccer. Why? They learned to run after their brains had healed, whereas they learned to walk when their brains were still injured. The awkward way of walking is just a bad habit, Pape argues. They need to correct that habit. They need to be treated as athletes, not as disabled children.

This inspiring book will give hope to parents of kids with CP and other brain injuries, and it will add an intriguing chapter to the growing literature in neuroplasticity. Pape’s book will be published in the spring of 2016.

For more on Dr. Karen Pape’s work, visit her website or watch this incredible TEDx talk she gave on the subject.

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