You asked: Why would a toddler have to wear a helmet?

The most common cause for helmets today is to treat positional plagiocephaly, or flat head syndrome. A number of factors contribute to positional plagiocephaly. In most cases, the issue will fix itself by the time the child is 5 years old. But if a parent is concerned, a helmet can help properly shape the skull.

Why do some toddlers have to wear helmets?

Over time, the bones in the skull fuse together. As a result of their softer skulls, babies can develop irregularly shaped heads. In some cases, they might need a helmet to correct the shape of the head and avoid future health issues.

How do you know if your baby needs a helmet?

Your doctor will check your baby’s head size and shape at each well-child visit. These visits happen about every 2 months during infancy. If your baby has a large flat spot that isn’t getting better by about 4 months of age, your doctor may prescribe a helmet.

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How long do babies wear helmet for plagiocephaly?

Plagiocephaly helmets use pressure to mold a baby’s soft skull, correcting the misshapen head. They’re usually made of plastic with a foam lining, and they look similar to a kid’s bicycle helmet. Depending on his condition, your baby may wear the helmet for a month or two to as long as six months.

Are baby helmets really necessary?

“There are definitely cases of infants with mild to moderate skull deformation who are treated with helmet therapy, and this study confirms and reaffirms that this is not necessary,” said Dr. James J. Laughlin, an author of the policy statement on skull deformities for the American Academy of Pediatrics, AAP.

Are baby helmets uncomfortable?

Helmet molding therapy is not painful or uncomfortable for your baby. Duration of treatment can vary based on your baby’s needs, but average treatment is 3 months. Helmet therapy is also known as cranial orthosis.

What causes flat back of head?

Flat head syndrome usually happens when a baby sleeps with the head turned to the same side during first months of life. This causes a flat spot, either on one side or the back of the head. Flat head syndrome is also called positional plagiocephaly (pu-ZI-shu-nul play-jee-oh-SEF-uh-lee).

What happens if plagiocephaly is untreated?

Positional plagiocephaly does not usually cause serious complications. If congenital plagiocephaly, which is caused by craniosynostosis, is left untreated, it can lead to serious complications, including: Head deformities, possibly severe and permanent. Increased pressure inside the head.

Can flat head be corrected without helmet?

Plagiocephaly Treatment Without a Helmet. In 77% of cases, milder plagiocephaly can be corrected sufficiently without the need for a helmet, through what is known as repositioning.

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Can flat head cause developmental delays?

Associate Professor Martiniuk said: “Our study shows that positional plagiocephaly (or flat head) is associated with an increased risk of developmental delays, in particular motor skills.”

What is severe plagiocephaly?

Positional plagiocephaly is a condition in which specific areas of an infant’s head develop an abnormally flattened shape and appearance. Occipital plagiocephaly causes a flattening of one side of the back of the head and is often a result of the infant consistently lying on his or her back.

How common is flat head syndrome?

Two types of plagiocephaly

Positional plagiocephaly, also called deformational plagiocephaly, is the most common type of flat head syndrome. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, it affects up to 50 percent of babies. Congenital plagiocephaly, also known as craniosynostosis, is a rare birth defect.

Do helmets really help flat heads?

PRACTICE CHANGER. Do not recommend helmet therapy for positional skull deformity in infants and children. Wearing a helmet causes adverse effects but does not alter the natural course of head growth.

Why do so many babies need helmets now?

The most common cause for helmets today is to treat positional plagiocephaly, or flat head syndrome. A number of factors contribute to positional plagiocephaly. In most cases, the issue will fix itself by the time the child is 5 years old. But if a parent is concerned, a helmet can help properly shape the skull.

When is it too late for cranial helmet?

Is it too late to seek treatment? It is probably not too late, although your baby’s skull growth has definitely slowed down by now. Some helmet manufacturers will “band” babies up to 24 months old; however, treatment within the first year is found to be most effective.

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How long does it take for a baby’s head to round?

Your baby’s head should return to an adorable, round shape anywhere between 2 days and a few weeks after delivery.

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