Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

plagiocephaly and wearing a helmet.

Posted by on May. 2, 2010 at 12:32 AM
  • 11 Replies

My son was diagnosed with plagiocephaly (misshapped head) about 3 weeks ago by our pediatrition. He sent us to a cranial specialist and they urged that we go with a band or helmet for his head to correct the problem. I am looking for any opinions about this topic. we are really lost as to get this $4000 helmet that he has to wear the entire summer or wait it out and see if his head corrects itself. He is about to be 4 months old. Anyone choose the helment for the child? anyone choose not to? and what where the results? Thank you for any advise.

by on May. 2, 2010 at 12:32 AM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
Linsala
by on May. 2, 2010 at 12:34 AM

My cousins son wore one for a while. He's 5 now and you would never know he had any problems.

Honeybun09
by on May. 2, 2010 at 12:38 AM

Sibling girls at my work had to wear the helmet. They said if they did not wear the helmet, a head injury could be fatal to them, so they chose the helmet route. They both didn't grow out of it until age 2 though.

Rock-a-bye, babies group,
right on CafeMom:
When the posts start,
The group willl rock;
When the advice flows,
No member will fail;
Down will go baby,
sleeping night and all.
Credit: Cafe Elizabeth

Come join the Babies group today!
Mother Goose Day Celebration May 3!
See you there! ~Honeybun09~Babies Mod~

Ayla-bellesmom
by Bronze Member on May. 2, 2010 at 12:57 AM

 Hey mama!

My daughter had/has positional plagiocephaly and our pediatrician actually reccomended that we wait. We were really nervous about it at first, because we did not want, obviously for her to grow up with such a noticeable condition, you know how kids can be.

Of course I'm not a doctor, and it very likely depends on the type of flattening your child has. Our daughter started out with a flattness on one side (the back left) of her head, which eventually shifted into the back of her head being flat. (This happened because we shifted to the other side while she slept ) It was pretty extreme,, the back was very flat, the sides were pushed out and the top of her head was raised,  but our doctor insisted that he was positive that it would go, if not all the way back to normal, enough that it would not be noticeable.

So we decided to wait it out, and for a long time, we definitely wavered. There is a short window of time when you can re-shape the head and that window was closing and we weren't seeing any real changes. However, by the time she was 18 months, it was almost completely unnoticable. Her head is still not as rounded out as most children's heads are, but it's rounded out enough that you can no longer tell that her head is any different. Not a single person who sees her has any idea unless I tell them.

This was my daughter at around...6 months. I'm sure you can tell, but she's the chubby one in pink lol.

From the front, you can see how the sides are quite wide and the top raises.

And this is our daughter now at 2 and a half.
and from the front
Ayla-bellesmom
by Bronze Member on May. 2, 2010 at 1:06 AM

 And another thing, the biggest reason that our pediatrician urged us to wait, was that a) the specific area of her head affected was one that normally rounded out with time, and b) because the flattening was not affecting her facial features (some children with plagiocephaly will have shifted eyebrows, ears or cheekbones due to the cranial changes). So, by no means am I saying that just because it worked out for us, that you will end up the same results. Honestly, if they're reccomending the helmet, I would probably go with it. It's a lot of money, but...you know if he needs it, he needs it.

Does your insurance not cover the cost of the helmet? Or do you not have insurance?

 


"When people hear good music, it makes them homesick for something they never had, and never will have.”~ Edgar Watson Howe


"Music is what feelings sound like."


"Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music" ~ Angela Monet

Shabaam_CFC
by on May. 2, 2010 at 1:17 AM

You know what, this is something I brought up to my doctor for my DS at his 6m check up. My DS preferes to sleep on his back, and even though I would turn his head, or get him on his side, he would get back onto his back.

Anywhoo, my doc said not to worry and that just by getting him to sleep on his sides, it should correct itself. Now Ima little worried because even though his head isnt as flat as it once was, his head does look wide.

I never even knew about this ...I dont know if I should wait, or set up an appointment. Thanks OP for bringing this up...

GL, I hope everything works out

Ayla-bellesmom
by Bronze Member on May. 2, 2010 at 1:23 AM

 You know what? Bringing it up won't hurt. Get the information you need and go from there. Honestly, if it's already corrected itself some, you're probably good. Ayla's took a long, long time to correct. From 6m to maybe....15 or 16 months we didn't see much change, it was very slow and gradual. So if his is already correcting itself, you will probably be ok. But like I said, bring it up again, it's not going to hurt.

Quoting Shabaam_CFC:

You know what, this is something I brought up to my doctor for my DS at his 6m check up. My DS preferes to sleep on his back, and even though I would turn his head, or get him on his side, he would get back onto his back.

Anywhoo, my doc said not to worry and that just by getting him to sleep on his sides, it should correct itself. Now Ima little worried because even though his head isnt as flat as it once was, his head does look wide.

I never even knew about this ...I dont know if I should wait, or set up an appointment. Thanks OP for bringing this up...

GL, I hope everything works out

 


"When people hear good music, it makes them homesick for something they never had, and never will have.”~ Edgar Watson Howe


"Music is what feelings sound like."


"Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music" ~ Angela Monet

sallymoon
by on May. 2, 2010 at 7:21 AM

My son wore a helmet from 11 months old until about 16 months old.  He had 15 mm of asymmetry when he started with the helmet, and got down to 7 mm.  I can still see it, but nobody else notices and it's not nearly as bad as it was before the helmet.

Child Passenger Safety Technician

butterflyblu
by on May. 2, 2010 at 1:00 PM

It depends on the severity of it.  Getting it done between 4-6 months is the best time to correct it.  My older son had it but not severe enough the specialist thought he needed a helmet.  We did positional therapy and forced him to sleep on the opposite side.  He was a back sleeper but turned his head towards one side.  We did that for about 2 months and it worked!  Shortly thereafter he started tummy sleeping on his own.  No one can ever tell he had a flat spot.  Without knowing your son personally, I would say it depends on the severity.  And I know some moms who have appealed insurance companies and gotten the helmet covered!  They say it's cosmetic so that's why many insurance companies won't cover it (including military health insurance) so if you get recommendations from the doctor and appeal you may get it covered or at least a portion of it.  $4000 is a lot of money!  The risk of waiting though is that it gets worse and the older the baby is, the less effective helmets are.  I know a mom who waited and got the helmet when her son was almost a year.  It didn't really do anything and the poor kid still has a noticeable flat spot as a toddler.  I can't seem to find the picture when he was 4 month before we started therapy.  These aren't the best but you can still kind of tell the progress.  His was actually on the back of his head towards the left side.  Left untreated, it can cause one ear to be pushed forward and cause the facial features to be uneven. 

This was 5 months right when we started. 

 

6 months.

 

2 yrs.

 


           

Jenny229
by on May. 2, 2010 at 10:32 PM

Thank you so, so, so much for all the information. Also that you for taking the time to post pictures! Ireally appreciate it. Your children are so beautiful! My so does have one ear more forward than the other at this point. This is part of the reason we are so lost.

My2babiesmom
by on May. 3, 2010 at 3:08 PM

My daughter was diagnosed with plagiocephalywhen she was three months old.  She is now 7 months old and she has had a helmet for 3 weeks.  She also has torticollis, which is a weak and/or short muscle on one side of her neck which causes her to want to always sleep the same way, which is what caused her plagiocephaly.  We tried different things before we got the helmet and had her measured several times to see if it was self correcting and it was only getting worse, so we got the helmet.  We were also concerned with the timing because the longer we waited the less effective treatment would be.  I am glad that we finally got it, because I am seeing a difference already, and she only will have to wear it for a few months.  Insurance said they would not cover it, but I have appealed.

I hope everything works out well for you.  I know how scary it can be.

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)