Plagiocephaly? Helmet use?

Sheryl - posted on 02/03/2010 ( 6 moms have responded )

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My five month old has torticollis and plagiocephaly. We have been going to physical therapy for about six weeks to address the torticollis, but have not had much luck correcting the plagiocephaly. The therapist is recommending that my daughter be fitted for a helmet. Does anyone have thoughts, suggestions or considerations about doing or not doing this? I'm torn. Everyone tells me that it will correct on its own-except for the therapist and doctor. I don't want her to grow up with a flat head, but I also don't know if I can keep her in a helmet for 23 hours a day for six+ months.

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User - posted on 07/28/2013

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My grandson's head remains red even hours after the helmet is removed. (It is not supposed to be off for hours, but it is Sunday, and we have no doctor to consult with.) We were told that the redness would subside after about thirty minutes. It did lessen, but did not go away. What should I do?

User - posted on 04/23/2011

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i have a 5 month old as well and he has torticollis and plagiocephaly as well. he just got fitted for a helmet last week. it should be here on tuesday. he sees a therapist once a week. i am in the same boat as you. but i will tell you i dont know if it will correct itself. i have a five year old as well and he had the same condition i did not use a helmet and his head is not evenly proportioned. so i am going to try a helmet if its proven to help i would say go with it. i will keep you posted as he gets the helmet and wears it. but time is of the essence after there one it cant be fixed.

Natasha - posted on 02/05/2010

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My son is currently seeing a cranio-sacral osteopath. It is non-invasive and considered alternative therapy. I was not happy with the lack of intervention from my son's Dr for my son's plagiocephaly and slight torticollis. Apparently as long as my son can look side to side with head movement then he apparently is fine. My son can look side to side, but has problems touching his left ear to his shoulder. This is the reason why he turns his head one way whilst sleeping and now has a misshapen head.
My son is 13 months, so treatments have to be quite close together as the plates in his head are starting to become more rigid for permanent fusing. If I would have known about this sooner, I would have definitely looked into this treatment when my son was the same age as your son now.

Cookie - posted on 02/05/2010

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I am a nurse and I agree with the therapist and doctor. The purpose of the helmet or cranial band is to guide the heads growth and allow the flat part to expand and round out. The EARLIER its treated the better since head growth slows as the child ages which makes correcting the shape more difficult. Usually kids wear the helmet 4-6months. That is a small amout of time compared to her whole life. You also don't want it to end up changing her facial symmetry.

Sincerely,

cookie

Krista - posted on 02/03/2010

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From what I've read, therapists usually don't suggest helmets unless it's a severe enough case that they feel that it will NOT correct on its own, or with conservative treatment. The therapist will have seen many, many cases of this, and if you're not having any luck with the conservative treatment, I would trust her judgment that a helmet is necessary in order to correct it.



My son had a mild case of plagiocephaly, but it did correct itself in about four weeks when I changed his sleeping position and gave him more tummy time. But his was a mild case. If both your doctor and therapist are saying that it's not going to correct on its own, then you should listen to them.



It's up to you, but I would definitely go for the helmet. Severe plagiocephaly, if uncorrected, can start distorting their facial features.

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