Babies and head-shaping helmets - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 50 Old 05-03-2005, 10:27 PM
 
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Both of my babies were carried in arms and sling more than they were set down. Both of them ended up with flat heads. Abi's was so bad she almost got a helmet, but luckily it grew enough that she didn't have to. If you stand over her head and look down at it while her hair is wet you can still see that it's flat in the back, but not so bad that it's noticeable otherwise.

Nitara was born with torticollis so her mucles and tendons were tight on one side. This was from positioning in the womb. She came out like that. Her head was flat on one side for awhile. I did exercises with her and it's mostly corrected but still there a little.

I don't think it's right to judge people. The only thing I did with both girls was to put them on their backs to sleep for the first three mos. After that they both rolled to their tummies on their own. They both had/have reflux and were sat in their carseats or swings for 30 mins after each feeding. The rest of the time they were carried. Both sat up on their own at 4 mos. old. Abi started crawling at 5.5 mos old. Nitara started to crawl at 7 mos old.

The doctors I talked with about their heads said they see a lot more babies who have this after the "back to sleep" campaign.

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#32 of 50 Old 06-21-2005, 03:06 PM
 
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Old thread, I know.

Jett has now been in his helmet (see my avatar or here for the bigger version) for just over one month. I dislike it. He couldn't care less. I don't like it for the following reasons:
It hurts my arm where the rear ridge presses into my arm when we nurse.
Nursing in public is NEVER discreet when your critter's wearing a big white helmet.
He overheats easily and we are stuck inside a lot because of it.
It smells like a cast or a football helmet when he sweat. Otherwise, though, it's like concentrated baby-smell, which I .
When he's upset, I can't cuddle him into my neck. Actually, when he's upset, I always remove it to cuddle him.

The comments from the general public are very broad and amusing. They range from furtive stares to "what did you let happen to that baby?" to "does he have seizures?" to "boy, he must be REALLY rambunctious" to football/hockey player comments to 'Gee, I guess mom thinks you are going to fall (out of the mei tai or sling)"

Anyway, the folks that irritate me the most are the ones who play the "I'm not looking" game or the ones who have kids that ask them about it and they don't give them an even half-decent answer. I just wish I had the 'nads to go over there and tell the kids what's up, despite the parents. Ah well, I'm working on it.

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#33 of 50 Old 06-26-2005, 02:16 PM
 
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As other posters have said, there are many reasons why a child may have to wear a helmet that may have nothing to do with the shape of a child's head, and have nothing to do with being (or not being) AP.

Severe Von Willebrand Disease, for example, may cause a child to need a helmet.

My own sweet, sweet son has VWD. And I can assure you that he has never been neglected a day in his life. He slept 12 hours in my arms last night, and right now he is cuddled in my lap, having just happily nursed back to sleep for a nap.

Please do not be judgemental.

There are many things that cannot be seen with the eye, and therefore, we do not know.

to all. Esp to the wee ones wearing helmets, and the parents of them as well.
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#34 of 50 Old 06-26-2005, 02:35 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by USAmma
I used to judge a lot, with many things, until it happened to me.

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There but for the grace of God go I...
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#35 of 50 Old 06-27-2005, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Past_VNE
'Gee, I guess mom thinks you are going to fall (out of the mei tai or sling)"
:LOL :LOL That's a new one!

Thanks for the update. It's always nice to see how the babes are growing.

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#36 of 50 Old 11-12-2006, 10:07 PM
 
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Old thread, but...

My son had a helmet for plagiocephaly. I didn't neglect him for a moment! He would only lay in one position from the time he was born, and we put him on his back to sleep as we understand it is the safest way to avoid SIDS. (He refused the family bed and slept better in his crib from day one, and still won't even nap with me. He didn't like the sling until he was 5 months, but we still sling now at 13 months.)

We did tummy time, we tried to reposition him, but the flatness continued to develop and wasn't going away on its own. His head was disproportionately large for his body and our neurosurgeon suggested that some babies with bigger heads are more prone to developing plagiocephaly.

We got a lot of rude comments, but mostly they were out of ignorance. One woman told me that her neighbor's baby wore one, then he died. Another person asked if he wore it because I drop him. When I said it was for a medical condition, he very seriously asked if the medical condition was because I drop him. Another woman said how GOOD it was of me to care for my special needs baby, as if I would just leave him in a field because he didn't fit her idea of perfect. He isn't special needs, he just had a misshapen head!

It pains me to think that someone could have looked at my son and thought that he wore that because of my neglect or abuse.
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#37 of 50 Old 03-21-2007, 04:29 PM
 
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Both of my boys ended up in corrective helmets. My first was a breech baby with low fluid. He was born 6 weeks early and spent 2.5 weeks in the NICU. He had torticollis so bad if you turned his head his head literally snapped back the other way. Our ped said "oh he'll outgrow it" and sent us on our way. By the time I demanded another answer his plagio had gotten so severe even with 5 months in a helmet he still has an uneven face (which will possibly affect his vision, hearing and headaches) and a flat spot on the back of his head. He was given plenty of tummy time.

Our 2nd we were very vigilant about not having this happen again. When we noticed a flat spot on the side of DS2's head at two months we began aggressively repositioning only to change the flat spot to the back of his head. He ended up with a helmet for brachycephaly.

I've done a lot of research on this and no one knows for sure but many drs feel it's more common in preemies (my first) or babies that were low down most of the pregnancy (my 2nd) which can cause constant pressure on the skull and make it not harden as much as it should. Some drs also feel that certain people are just more genetically pre-disposed to having softer skulls. There were children years ago with this problem as well (my dad remembers his cousin had a perfectly flat back of his head and my boss says she has a flat spot on the back of her head and uneven eyes/facial bones) but it's more common now because of "back to sleep" and carseats. However in most cases (as I can attest to) most children wearing corrective helmets are not wearing them from parental neglect.

We are expecting a 3rd child in the fall and I plan to be proactive this time as well but am also accepting of the fact that this child might need a corrective helmet as well as I do think my children might fall into that "genetically pre-disposed" category. I'm just thankful more people know what they are for now than they did with my first. With my first people just stared and I could see them thinking "oh that poor sick baby" and I blamed myself severly for something that wasn't my fault. With my 2nd I had many people comment "my son/daughter/neice etc had one of those" and smile. It makes a world of difference to that parent of that child in the helmet if you know what it's for and give them a smile--trust me they are probably already dealing with "mommy guilt" and could use a break.
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#38 of 50 Old 12-05-2008, 06:40 PM
 
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I'm a concerned grandmother of 6 small children ages 4 and under and found this wonderful site after searching for information on infant head-shaping helmets. The first post in this thread caught me by surprise. I was somewhat taken back after reading the poster's comments that infant head problems are caused by lazy parents whose babies stayed in one position too long.

While that can sometimes cause problems, it is not always the case. I have 7-week-old twin granddaughters. They were born at 38 weeks, which is unusual for twins. The twins were big as far as twin births go. One weighed 6 lbs 4 ozs, and the other weighed 5 lbs 9 ozs. In addition to being big, they were also breech. While giving birth via C-Section, it was noted that the smaller twin's head was wedged at the edge of my DIL's rib cage, which caused a huge dent in my granddaughter's skull.

The doctor first felt it may correct itself in time. However, my DIL is learning now that one of her twins will need to wear a helmet to correct the problem. While the dent has, for the most part, gone away, my granddaughter's head is still somewhat lopsided. Fortunately, the pediatrician is being proactive and will begin helmet therapy next week.

I am happy they have a proactive doctor. My oldest grandson (now 4 years old) was also a large baby, and his head was a little lopsided. His then pediatrician didn't think a helmet was necessary, so he still has a slight problem today with the shape of his head and an uneven face.
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#39 of 50 Old 12-05-2008, 07:15 PM
 
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I'm just learning from this thread, but I wanted to comment that I've seen tons of babies with helmets starting about a year ago. I honestly thought they were to protect their heads from impact, I did not know they were for shaping.
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#40 of 50 Old 12-05-2008, 07:17 PM
 
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Yes my friend's son has plagiocephaly (sp). She was AP and did everything "right."

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#41 of 50 Old 12-05-2008, 07:21 PM
 
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I wouldn't have thought that they were for shaping. I figured they were for protection because of some kind of medical condition?
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#42 of 50 Old 12-05-2008, 08:14 PM
 
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We adopted my 15yo son when he was 2. He was in a helmet for almost a year from 8mos on because of severe occipital positional plagiocephaly. He was severely and atrociously neglected at his birth mother's home. His head is still misshapen and extremely flat in the back, although it's better than it was originally. When talking to the MD they said they have seen an increase in helmets needed due to the back to sleep campaign, but they are always concerned about neglect when it is a severe flattening the way DS's was. There is a clear difference between mild/moderate flattening from sleeping or growth patterns, and gross deformational flattening. As for Craniostenosis, the condition where the growth plates fuse prematurely and cause flattening, that is a pretty rare condition and diagnosed from xray/ct scans, and it cannot be cured with helmets...it requires skull surgery to allow room for their brain to grow. MD was concerned that Izabear had prematurely fused sutures so we already went that route...turned out she's fine

HTH
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#43 of 50 Old 12-05-2008, 11:15 PM
 
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I've learned a lot from this thread... thanks OP and repliers! I always get comments on how perfectly round my babies heads are. I swear I didn't do anything to make them that way! I mean, I do carry them a lot, and they chose their own sleep positions... first one slept on her back a lot, and both of them have required the swing for evening fussies when being in my arms was too overwhelming to their senses. We just got lucky, I guess. They both had really short (and extremely painful) crowning stages at birth... perhaps that has something to do with it. Anyway, out of my hands. I had wondered how many babies heads are misshapen that people would be so amazed at my round-headed babies.

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#44 of 50 Old 12-06-2008, 01:50 PM
 
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my baby has never been on her back and has a mishaped head, the back sticks out vs flat

If she needs a helmet I hope people don't think this kind of stuff about us, I'm as AP as they come, my friends remind me that 2 mins on her own won't hurt her
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#45 of 50 Old 12-06-2008, 04:35 PM
 
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I, too, wonder about the potential impact of craniosacral work on the conditions listed here. I'm sure some are too severe, but there might be some benefit for others.

Interesting reading nevertheless!
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#46 of 50 Old 12-07-2008, 12:16 PM
 
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My DD currently has a mishaped head at 9 weeks. Our Ped has referred us to a Physical Therapist but if PT doesn't work she may need a helmet. DD was breech and apparently stuck in the same position in the womb for quite some time. She had her head turned to one side so since she was born she has favored turning her head to that side. The muscles in her neck are very tight so she has always had a difficult time turning her head to the other side.

Despite the exercises we've been doing to physically turn her head and loosen up the muscles she is still favoring that one side. So, now she has developed somewhat of a 'flat head' on the side she is always laying on. At her last checkup the Ped told me to have her sleep on her side ALL the time now instead of her back so she is forced to lay her head on the opposite side. Right now her entire head is a little crooked, from a top down view it almost looks like a trapezoid....even her forehead is slanted.

We are going to try the PT but the Ped is afraid that may not work as well as they want and she may end up in a helmet. We will try anything to avoid that but we also don't want DD to grow up with a crooked head!

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#47 of 50 Old 12-07-2008, 03:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by NaturalMama311 View Post
My DD currently has a mishaped head at 9 weeks. Our Ped has referred us to a Physical Therapist but if PT doesn't work she may need a helmet. DD was breech and apparently stuck in the same position in the womb for quite some time. She had her head turned to one side so since she was born she has favored turning her head to that side. The muscles in her neck are very tight so she has always had a difficult time turning her head to the other side.

Despite the exercises we've been doing to physically turn her head and loosen up the muscles she is still favoring that one side. So, now she has developed somewhat of a 'flat head' on the side she is always laying on. At her last checkup the Ped told me to have her sleep on her side ALL the time now instead of her back so she is forced to lay her head on the opposite side. Right now her entire head is a little crooked, from a top down view it almost looks like a trapezoid....even her forehead is slanted.

We are going to try the PT but the Ped is afraid that may not work as well as they want and she may end up in a helmet. We will try anything to avoid that but we also don't want DD to grow up with a crooked head!
lambdoid craniosynostosis is worth a google
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#48 of 50 Old 05-24-2013, 10:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by DarkHorseMama View Post

I just saw another baby in a helmet today.
Whenever I see one, I can't help but feel a bit judgemental towards the parents for, what I perceive to be, something they likely had control over. Aren't those helmets used because baby has spent too much time lying down on a semi-hard surface?


Has anyone that followed AP'ing had a baby need one?
Are there other reasons to wear one besides flattened heads?[/quote






Wow! Okay first of all my son has too have helmet. And it surely isn't because I let him lay on one side of his head more than the other. He was 3 months premature and he spent 3 months in the NICU they might have neglected too turn his head. But they kept my son alive. So think before you judge!
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#49 of 50 Old 05-30-2013, 05:36 AM
 
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Friends of mine had premie twins, and they are getting a helmet for one of them.  I always thought they were for seizures when I first saw them on children, so hearing they were getting because of his skull development was enlightening for me. 

The thing that shocked me is that they had to pay for the helmet themselves.  They have insurance through the military but it is not covered because it is "cosmetic" even though their pediatrician has highly recommended it because he was a premie.   

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#50 of 50 Old 06-07-2013, 01:10 PM
 
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My bb has a pretty noticeable flat spot. She may need a helmet. I'm not going to feel guilty about it because I will do everything in my power to round it out. She has torticollis and we are doing physio but if she needs a helmet, we will get her one. AP'ing is fine and hats off to y'all that have perfectly shaped babies, but for those of us who don't, please be kind and don't judge us. Wearing her more would not have fixed her muscle tightness.
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