Flat head?

Samantha - posted on 11/18/2009 ( 16 moms have responded )

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Reagan has a flat spot on the back of her head that I'm concerned about. We took her to a cranial specialist on Monday and the recommend a DOC band, but I don't want to avoid it if it's not necessary. We try to do as much tummy time with her as possible but she either flips herself right over or gets upset after a few minutes. Is anyone else having this problem? Thanks!

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Ashley - posted on 11/22/2009

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Is it more flat on one side (ex. more flat on the right side vs the left side)? when she looks at you does she have a little tilt (i describe it as a puppy look how they tilt their heads when they look at you) if she does it is most likely Torticollis (tightening of the neck muscles) all you have to do is get her into Physical Therapy and they teach you certain exercises to loosen her neck muscles. My son has a flat head on the right side because he wouldnt turn his head to the right and my doc wouldnt do anything about it until his 4month checkup after 1 month of therapy his head is almost looking normal again so i dont think he will need a helmet. anyways just ask ur babies doc if they think it might be Torticollis! Good luck!

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they have a special pillow (well least here in Europe) that you can lay them on, that adjusts to the child's head so that way the baby doesn't have to lay directly flat on the back of the head. Also tummy time is suppose to help, but my daughter hates it, so why make her life miserable. I just try to sit her up with cushions around her, or put her in her Bumbo chair.

Louise - posted on 12/03/2009

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my son had a flat spot from around 6months tp 11months, it starts to fade with less time spent on their backs, we just laid down extra blankets to make it softer for him and it helped a lot. with tummy time its best to lie with them when they cry or amuse them with something causing them to look forwards, also strengthening the neck. :)

Sarah - posted on 12/03/2009

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My little boy had a flat spot on the side of his head as he favoured sleeping to his right. We have used a Goi Goi pillow (originates from Sweden I think) since he was about 3 months old and it has worked wonders although we will probably re-position under his cot sheet once he starts rolling over. Good luck and hope all goes well for you x

Danielle - posted on 12/03/2009

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My daughter has about a silver dollar sized flat spot on the back of her head, also the hair is rubbed off there. I looked at some pictures on one of the sites linked to above and I really don't think its any of those conditions. I guess I will ask the Dr to take a close look at her 6 months appointment coming up. Good luck to anyone dealing with the band, helmet or physical therapy for the neck stuff!

Rowan - posted on 11/25/2009

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I don't believe a helmet is any use at all, most babies have flat spots and the head readjusts itself in time, if it is severe though then a doctor must be contacted. x

Jennifer - posted on 11/25/2009

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As an aside, one of my girls had a bad enough case we chose to go through with helmet therapy, twice, and have her operated on. One of my girls never had an issue with either tort or plagio. My youngest has very mild forms of both and we're choosing not to treat her at this point.

Jennifer - posted on 11/25/2009

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"Solving itself over time" is a myth that is propagated by far too many doctors. Only mild (that wouldn't need a band anyway) can correct to normal with time. If it's bad enough to warrant a band at 6 months (10mm+ asymmetry for plagio, 90%+ ratio for brachy) there will always be a flat spot. It could correct some but never fully. Repositioning can do wonders but that depends on how viligant the parent is, the child, and is generally only effective with kids under 6 months of age. Banding is best under the age of 12 months, and most effective between 3 & 7 months). Once the skull hardens (somewhere between 18-24 months) there is no more correction possible.

As for tort, again a mild case can be worked out by the child as they become more mobile and naturally stretch and strengthen neck muscles, but if it's bad enough a doctor is suggesting even at home PT, it's not going to get better without treatment.

Do yourself and your child a favor and fully research this because there is a window of opportunity to treat it. Make a fully informed decision on your child's case because once that window is gone, it's gone forever.

Check out these resources

http://www.plagiocephaly.info/

Tiffany - posted on 11/24/2009

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My son has the exact same thing(the flat head). My doctor told us to do lots of tummy time but my son gets frustrated with that. Also, she said to put him to sleep on the opposite side of his head. I've tried everything but it's a preference thing. With SIDS, this has become more and more popular. You have nothing to worry about. Once your daughter starts crawling and walking and getting off her head (instead of just being able to lay there all day) it will solve itself. I wouldn't waste money on a helmet if it were just a preference of his. Although with your daughter having Torticollis I don't know what your doctor recommends. Does Torticollis solve itself over time? If so, even when your daughter begins crawling and walking and getting up and about I would assume this would solve the problem.

Cristy - posted on 11/24/2009

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My daughter's head is more flat on the right side, doc said put toys on the oppisite side of the crib so she looks up the other way.

Jennifer - posted on 11/24/2009

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Went through it with our Twin A. She had tort so bad she needed surgical release. That and two helmets later you'd probably not see anything wrong. Overwhelming at forst, but really a painless experience all the way around.

Kathryn - posted on 11/24/2009

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My son, Jacob also has a flat head, we use a sleep wedge that allows him to sleep on his side without letting him flip on his stomach or back. Lots of tummy time (as long as she will allow)...We use a BUMBO Chair, it is not only good to keep her from laying on her back, but also lets her use her muscles to learn how to sit on her own, you can get those at Wal-Mart. Good Luck!

Ashley - posted on 11/24/2009

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let me know how it goes! i find out tommorow if Landyn (my little guy) will need a helmet or not (if he does it might be a good thing when he starts crawling lol less bumps if he hits his head) on Cafemom.com there are alot of June babies that have Torticollis i thought it was rare but doesnt seem like it

Samantha - posted on 11/23/2009

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Thanks for responding! Yes, Ashley, she does have Torticollis but her's is on the left side. We were doing neck exercises and we thought that she was doing much better about turning her head to the left so we stopped doing the exercises. But the doc said we should keep doing them. We are still on the fence about the hemet. Insurance is going to cover the cost so we kind of feel like we might as well do it, it's not going to hurt anything. My husband brought up a good point, he said if she grows up with bad teeth we would get her braces, right? We're going to try to make a decision this week.

Debbie - posted on 11/22/2009

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my middle son had this problem as well, his was quiet bad they wanted to put a helmet on him. so i started sleeping him on his side, to keep him from rolling over we put these foam rolls on either side of him,under his armpits so they werent near his face(u could use rolled up towel) here in australia u can buy a special roll specifcally for this. and each time we put him to bed we just swapped sides he slept on. now his head is fine and no helmet was needed.

Stacey - posted on 11/22/2009

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I'm having the same problem with my son. So I try to do tummy time, I sit him in my lap(good for learning to sit upright) or I have a playstation that I put him in. So I just try to keep him off of the back of his head as much as possible.

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