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Thread: Misshapen Head

  1. #1
    lindie Guest

    Default Misshapen Head

    Hi guys,

    Going to pediatrician next month, My son seems to have a little misshapen head, he was a ceaser baby so no birth canal minipulation, but all of a sudden his head seems to be a little bit flat on one side?? This is my third baby never seen this problem before wondering if anyone else has any thing like this that they can tell me about?



    Lindie

  2. #2

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    Lindie

    My daughter had a flat spot on one side of her head and she was born via C/S. She used to favour one side when she lay on her back, and no matter what we did to persuade her to turn her head the other way, she didn't.

    Talking to other Mums at the time, I knew there were quite a few bubs who had misshapen heads too. There are little things you can do if it's caused by lying in the same position - the pediatrician will give you some tips (eg place something he likes to look at on the opposite side of where he usually looks so he has to turn his head the other way to see it).

    Some babies need intervention to help their skulls reform into the "correct" shape. This is usually in the form of a helmet. Some of the Mums on this site have bubs who are currently wearing helmets. This seems to be the course of action in a relatively few amount of cases.

    It's good you don't have long to wait to get it checked out (more for your sake than his). BTW Gabrielle didn't have to have a helmet fitted, and by the time she was one her head was back in shape.

  3. #3

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    Hi Lindie,

    This is soooooo common! Ben is now 4 months old, and his head is flat on one side. Ben's pediatrician noticed this a couple of months back, and said it came from favouring one side when he sleeps (which is the left). After that, we noticed he always falls asleep facing the left, because he sucks his left thumb, and turns his head to do so. I say, observe your son when he is sleeping, does he favour one side? We now move ben onto his right side after he falls asleep at night, supported by a special pillow made to help babies sleep on their sides safely. Although we do this, and it seems to be helping, we still need to take Ben to a physio (which im still to arrange) because him favouring one side is effecting his neck and back.

    Good luck at the pediatrician! be sure to let us know how it went.

  4. #4
    mizzsocial Guest

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    My friends baby had a misshaped head, but by the time he was about 10 months it all went back to normal.. i heard its common.

  5. #5
    lindie Guest

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    Thanks guys, Hes happy to turn his head in any direction and doesnt seem to be too worried about it but I too have noticed YES he does sleep and play on his left side too!!!! And Is a left hand thumb sucker LOL, so maybe thats it my PED. said to sleep him on the opposite side, and place his favourite little playgro doggy on that side for him too look at (Or Raggs when its on TV, He loves it already!!!!) So Im trying that but the earliest I can get an appointment for is end of August...... No too soon.

    But thank you to everyone who has replied I feel so much better!!!
    Lindie

  6. #6

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    Hi Lindie,

    Gus is one of the bubbas with severe plagiocephaly so is wearing a helmet to try to push the skull plates back into the right spot. Hopefully your little man can be helped with some repositioning. As Gus had such a severe case we received a LOT of advice from our neonatal paediatrician, 2 paediatric physiotherapists, a paediatric chiropractor, the helmet clinic at the children's hospital, and 2 neurosurgeons. The main things we were told when we were trying repositioning to correct the problem were as follows:

    1. Try to position the cot (and the baby within the cot) so that the attractive things in the room are forcing him to look on his non-preferred side. They said the most attractive things to a baby are the centre of the room and the window/light source. Toys and things are apparently the second most attractive thing.

    2. Try never to carry the baby so that their flat spot is pushing into your arm. For example Gus's flat spot is the back right side of his head so we are only allowed to carry him in the crook of our right arm as holding him in the left arm exerts pressure on the right side of his head.

    The same principle applies if you are bottle feeding your bubba. Don't hold your bubba with the flat spot pushing into your arm. Obviously if you are BF it's a bit trickier to change the position of feeding.

    3. Don't use a SNS capsule as they have a perfectly flat surface so that encourages your baby to turn their head to their preferred side to get comfortable. (I wish we knew this earlier as we used a capsule until about March!). We were advised to switch to a moulded padded convertible car seat.

    4. Try to keep your baby off their back as much as possible when they are awake. Depending on age - this will involve sitting in rocker chairs on a steeper incline than you might otherwise use, positioning bubba on their side or tummy to play. We were also encouraged to get Gus out of the pram bassinet and into the more angled sitting position in the pram earlier than we might otherwise have done so. We were also advised to use baby carriers more than the pram to get the weight off his head altogether.

    5. Use padding and wedges to keep your baby off the flat spot when they are in bed. If he is persistently moving onto his flat spot, wait until he is asleep and keep repositioning him.

    You can buy wedges to help with repositioning, or you can do it with rolled towells/bunny rugs as follows. Place two rolls down, about 15cm apart, then place a large bunny rug over the top and tuck the sides under each roll. Place your baby between the 2 rolls, not on his side, but with the shoulder of the affected side on top of that side's roll. The other roll is to keep baby from wiggling forward, and the receiving blanket on top of the rolls will help the rolls stay in place.

    6. As your baby is a thumb sucker and sucks the thumb on the same side as his flat spot,try covering that hand with a baby mit (the kind you get so baby wont scratch himself). The plan is to try to encourage him to suck the thumb on the other hand. If he's trying to suck his thumb through the mit, show him his other thumb, and encourage him to use it. This will encourage baby to turn his head the other way to get to a thumb.

    Umm that's about all I can think of at the moment. You are most welcome to email me should you want to ask any questions off line. xx
    Last edited by Kirsty EW; June 23rd, 2006 at 06:00 PM.

  7. #7

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    Kirsty I do hope that Gussy is doing well.

  8. #8

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    Divvy, You are fortunate that NeddyNed didn't end up needing to wear a helmet. It has been much much much tougher than we expected getting Gus to wear it for the necessary 23 hours a day. We are now on to our second helmet as he outgrew the first one made in March. (Tis an expensive exercise - they are $500 a pop!). Gus absolutely hates wearing the helmet and has worked out how to take it off. Once he's got it off he throws the nasty helmet as far away as his little arms will allow. I was driving along a busy city road the other day in heavy peak hour traffic and I heard the telltale "rrrriiiiiippp" of Gus undoing the velcro strap. Gus then prised the helmet off his head and hurled it into the front passenger side of the car. If it wasn't so dangerous, it would have been kind of funny. My DH and I are now used to hearing the helmet thump against a wall of his bedroom or the side of the cot whenever he's left alone in there. We had a chin strap put on yesterday so that should thwart the helmet removal activities for a while! Fortunately the helmet is actually working to correct his plagiocephaly - all-be-it slowly. How is Ned's head looking these days?

  9. #9

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    Kirsty - oooo he's very knowing isn't he, removing his helmet and throwing it away. That's so good to hear it's actually doing what it was designed to do though.

  10. #10

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    Hi Christine, Yeah - he's a little ratbag when it comes to the helmet. he ha! How are you and your lovely children?

  11. #11

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    We're going really well, thanks. Zeke goes for his annual cardiology and Ear Nose throat specialist visits in a month or two, and that's always fun (not!). It's like a torture test for how long you can hold your breath (usually from the time I walk in the door, to the time the Doc says, "The repairs to his heart are functioning well"). They have had the vomits this week, but apart from that, we're all great! Thanks for asking.

  12. #12
    donna_wool Guest

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    Hello all

    Apart from the RCH, where else can I take my son for a second opinion on his mild plagiocephaly? The RCH say he doesn't need a helmet, which is all fine with me as my son is 4 months old and has a mild flat spot, but a second opinion would be nice. There doesn't seem to be any other contacts on the internet. Any information will be appreciated.

  13. #13

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    Where do you live? If you are in NSW, I'd think Dr Robert Jones (neurosurgeon) at Sydney Children's Hospital in Randwick would be a good person to see for a second opinion. He was apparently one of the pioneers of the helmet therapy. If you're not in NSW perhaps you could phone the orthotics department of whichever hospital near you makes helmets and ask which neurosurgeons prescribe helmet therapy through the hospital. Then you could get a referral from your gp to one of those neurosurgeons and see them privately.

  14. #14

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    Neddy didn't need a helmet, he's going great guns now at 13 months. You can still notice tthat he has plagio, but only when his hair is really short. Otherwise it's only when you look directly down on him from above. His ears are pretty much okay (level and not different degrees forwads) so I'm not too worried.

    Kirsty, good to hear that Gussy is getting "along" with the helmet! Hope the chin strap has helped.

    Best wishes, Donna.

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