15 answers

Plagiocephaly/Misshapen Head/Flat Head in Infant

Hi, just wondering if any mom's out there have had a child with plagiocephaly? I have a 8 month old son with severe plagiocephaly. I have heard of going to a chiropractor to help this problem. Just wondering if anyone has any good stories (or bad) about getting help from a chiropractor for a misshapen head. The other route is a helmet, which I am not a big fan of. Any help, advice, comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

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Yes, I have a 6 mo old boy who is 3 weeks into the helmet. We tried the different avenues - physical therapy, a manipulative medicine doctor (deep tissue work) and were unable to get the necessary progress. I was 100% against the helmet, but in the end am glad we have one. In 3 weeks I have seen tremendous results. My son has torticollis as well which caused the plagio. His is moderate to severe...they say they think he'll only have 6-8 weeks in the helmet. It's a tough call, but you'll eventually know what to do. For me it was realizing that if I didn't do it now, I may regret it later. There is only a certain time frame in the kids for it to work. We used Cranial Technologies and they really helped me not be so nervous and realize that if not treated in some cases, it can cause issues for hearing, vision, sinus' etc. Good luck.xaaaz

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You should look at the helmet. My niece used it and it works great!

Hi A....My son Timothy had plagiocephaly and torticollis. We started PT for his tort at 3 months, and he was banded with his DOC band at 4 months. He wore it from September and was out of it right before Christmas. He is now almost 2 and I love his little round head. We noticed the flatness, and protruding forehead at about 8 weeks, immediately started PT and consulted with Cranial Technologies about the DOC band. It was a blessing for us. I was proud of my little football player...he loved the attention he got, we placed stickers on his band and had his name on the front. I defintely think you should go visit Cranial Tech. Please feel free to email me with any questions. Also--visit the yahoo plagiocephaly group--

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Plagiocephaly/

THere is a wealth of info there--I still read the posts and answer questions periodically.

Banding is a short amount of time--for a perfect little head!

Yes, I have a 6 mo old boy who is 3 weeks into the helmet. We tried the different avenues - physical therapy, a manipulative medicine doctor (deep tissue work) and were unable to get the necessary progress. I was 100% against the helmet, but in the end am glad we have one. In 3 weeks I have seen tremendous results. My son has torticollis as well which caused the plagio. His is moderate to severe...they say they think he'll only have 6-8 weeks in the helmet. It's a tough call, but you'll eventually know what to do. For me it was realizing that if I didn't do it now, I may regret it later. There is only a certain time frame in the kids for it to work. We used Cranial Technologies and they really helped me not be so nervous and realize that if not treated in some cases, it can cause issues for hearing, vision, sinus' etc. Good luck.xaaaz

I've never heard of chiropractic for plagiocephaly, but have known several kids who had the Doc band helmet. The moms were more bothered by it than the kids! They all really helped, and in the end I think it's worth it. You can have some fun with it too - let friends and family sign it like a cast, put stickers on it - make the best of it! It will be over before long anyway, with lifelong benefits that far outweigh the brief inconvenience.

My niece is 7 months old and just wore a helmet for this problem. Her head has gone from being really flat in the back to being normal. She was uppose to wear it for 10 weeks and got it off early. I highly recommend this.

Hi A.,
A helmet is best for your baby, look into Hanger Prosthetics and Orthotics in Fort Worth Texas ###-###-#### they have the best results and they scan every visit to track the progress. They also file your insurance helmets are not cheep. If you have any more questions please email me or call me at ###-###-####.
Thanks,
Valerie

My daughter is currently in a DOC band through Cranial Technologies, and like the other responses you have received, Chiropracter is not the answer for head re-shaping. Where did you hear that? Anyway, it's probably a result of Torticollis, most common culprit. I can understand going to a chiropracter fot Tort, but usually your best bet is to do physical therapy for that, because tort. is the shorting of the neck muscle, and therapy will help stretch out the short muscle, Also have your peditrician write you a RX for the band. This will help get the insurance to cover the cost of the band, they run about 3,500.00 without insurance. I was fortunate enough to have Aetna, they are the best for covering things like this. United Healthcare is HORRIBLE! They will not cover this. (I think they should be reviewed) Cranial Technologies has the laser measurments now, so It's very quick to get your sons head measurments. My daughter had to go through the casting :-(. This is just a pebble in the path, you won't regret doing this for your son. Trust me, it bothers the parents more than it bothers the kids. Good Luck to you
A.

A. -
Our son had a slightly flat right back side of his head when he was 2 months old and still pretty obvious at 4 months - we had chiropractic recommended to us at the 2 month mark but didn't give it a shot. At 4 months, the pedi discovered it was actually that his left eye had a cataract so he was constantly rolling to the right to be able to see. That said, I wish we had seen the chiro sooner. We finally started seeing one because it was obvious that he was still having some head/neck issues from overcompensating with his right side. He is doing amazingly better - even his vision is improving under chiropractic care (something the ophthalmologist did not think was possible!!!!). (Well, chiropractic and the power of prayer anyway!) :)

If you want to consult with a chiropractor, I would highly recommend ours. He is in far north Flower Mound / Highland Village area - Drs. Darrell and Rachael Lomonaco. Their office number is ###-###-####.

Tell them S. sent you and that you want to consult about the head shape. They practice gentle (I mean, SUPER GENTLE) adjustments, not the rough stuff that many chiropractors do. I believe you will be blessed with the experience there.

My son had Plagiocephaly. I have never heard of using a chiropractor to reshape. Perhaps a chiropractor could help with tort though, which is commonly associated with plagio. I would think you would still need the helmet to fix the flatness that is already there, and maybe the chiropractor to stop it coming back. Anyway, my experience with the DOC band (helmet) was not bad at all. My son wore it from about age 4-6 months. We went through Cranial Technologies. It was a pain keeping it clean and worrying that he would get too hot or be uncomfortable, but in retrospect he didn't have any problems at all. He still played and slept just fine. I was still able to nurse him just fine too. I met a mom on the Yahoo Group about Plagiocephaly who was kind enough to meet with me and let me meet her son and see his helmet first hand before going through with anything. That really helped put my mind at ease. I would be happy to do the same for you if you would like. It is a distant memory for my son, but I do still have his band if you would like to get an upclose look at one. I also had many conversations with my pediatrician about it.

My son was diagnosed with plagiocephaly at 4 months. His was a mid-range case and so we visited two different facilities that offered helmets as a solution. Nicolas ended up with a helmet from Hanger Prosthetics & Orthotics. I really did not want my child to have to wear the helmet because I didn't want people to stare at him, etc. I will tell you that this problem is more prevalent then you think. I had so many people ask me how I knew that he needed it as they were concerned for their own children. The result is a perfectly symmetrical head after only 12 weeks of treatment. A year later we don't even remember it. I would highly recommend Doctor Steve at the West 15th location near the Medical Center of Plano. The nice thing for the child is that they use a device that scans the head inorder to make the helmet and did not require the plaster mold that we found at other locations. I also liked that they were able to make adjustments in the office and the helmet was blue instead of the typical white.

I can't speak to the chiroprator solution as it wasn't offered to our case. I hope that you find a solution that works for both you and your son.

Best of Luck,
L.

At 8 months, I think the helmet is your best bet. Repositioning was an option when your child was younger, but now I am sure he moves too much for that to work. I think you really should give the helmet a chance. Have you had any measurements taken at STAR Cranial Center or Cranial Technologies? Do you know how severe the Plagio is for your son? My son wore a STARband from 5 months to 8 months. It was the best thing we could have done. I was very scared and unsure in the beginning but the whole process was awesome. I love his little round head now, he is 12 months old now. I used STAR Cranial Center and they were great. Does your son have torticollis as well? Have you been told he should go to physical therapy? I really think you should look into the helmet and at his age I wouldn't put off treatment for too long. You need to try to correct the flatness while he is young enough to have big growth spurts. Let me know if you have more questions or if you would like to know more about our helmet experience. Good luck!

I would like to thank all of you who responded. I have a friend who has known of a few infants who only went to a chiropractor and had their plagiocephaly fixed. I am not against the helmet, I have been to Star Band at Childrens, it is that our insurance more than likely will not cover it (I am waiting to hear back from the insurance company). The reason it has taken me so long is that I was told by his Peditrician that I had to have a Neurosuregon refer him to the Star Band place. And the appt. for the Neuro. took 4 months to get. Thank you for all of your advice.

Many children develop flat heads because they are unable to move there head to both sides completely, so there head naturally falls into one position. A chiropractor can absolutely help with this. Its not the snap crackle and popping that you might imagine. Generally just by using gentle message there necks can be adjusted so they have full range of motion. At that time they are about to sleep in different positions which will even out the head. Also message if the skull can help. I would definitely talk to a chiropractor.

My daughter had the same thing as the result of torticollis. We did opt to do the DOC band which was a hugh success. We had to correct the flat head before we could successfully treat the torticallis. She was only five months old when we started the process. Within a week we saw results. She only had to wear it for 7 weeks. It never bothered her at all except for the process of making the mold of her head. She wasn't too thrilled with that process. She is now six years old and is doing great. She has no memory of it at all. She actually like to look at the pictures we have and the video clips they let us take while they were making the mold. We never tried a chiopractor so I can not comment on that. Good luck.

My son was diagnosed with the same thing. We went with the DOC band. I am so happy that we did. He wore it for a couple of months. It was no problem at all. It worked wonderfully. He is 3 now and had a beautiful head!

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