How does cranial orthotics/helmeting correct my child’s head?
Cranial remolding helmets are usually made of a hard outer shell with a foam lining. Gentle, persistent pressures are applied to capture the natural growth of a baby’s head while inhibiting growth in the prominent areas and allowing for growth in the flat regions.
Is my child a candidate for helmet therapy?
If your child is diagnosed with deformational plagiocephaly, brachycephaly or scaphocephaly and is less than 12 months old, cranial remolding may be prescribed to correct the shape of the baby’s head. Helmets must be prescribe by a licensed physician. It’s important to note that not all infants are good candidates for helmet therapy, and it is important to discuss this with your medical professional.
In addition, children who have undergone endoscopy to correct craniosynostosis will often be prescribed helmet therapy after surgery to further correct the shape of the head.
Does my child need to wear the helmet all day?
Yes. The idea behind the helmet is that it is worn 23 hours a day. It can be taken off during bathing. The rest of the time, your infant should constantly be in the helmet, whether playing, sleeping or feeding. This can be shocking to hear as a parent, as you think of your baby spending his or her formative months wearing a helmet. One thing we like to emphasize is that the helmet is not uncomfortable for the baby.
How long will my child wear a helmet?
The average treatment with a helmet is usually three months, but the duration of treatment will depend on your child’s age and the severity of the condition. Careful and frequent monitoring is required to ensure that the skull is reshaping correctly.
How often will I need to see the orthotist while my child undergoes helmet therapy?
The frequency of follow-up visits depends on the severity of your baby’s condition. As your baby is being fitted with a molding helmet and adjustments are made, we recommend doing follow-ups every 2-4 weeks.
Is cranial remolding exclusively only for cosmetic purposes?
The answer is no. Cranial asymmetry has direct connections to hearing- and vision defects. Other issues are related to jaw alignment and neck muscle asymmetry. All of which would have to be treated at a later stage if left untreated at the root cause of the problem.
At what age should I be concerned about my infants head shape?
We suggest that you bring your baby for a screening at the age of 3 months. This allows us to be proactive with the treatment plan, if not too severe, we often suggesting repositioning therapy for a month or 2. Our best outcomes are when we start cranial remolding between the ages of 4 and 6 months. This window is when your baby’s skull presents with the most growth and the skull can be swiftly remolded. Please click here for a short synopsis of repositioning therapy.
Will my Medical Aid cover the expense of my infants cranial remolding therapy?
We are contracted with the majority of medical aids and do our utmost best to motivate for treatment coverage. All of this will be explained to you at our initial consultation and how you can play a roll in acquiring funding.
If there are any questions you might have that was not covered in our FAQ section, we would gladly answer them at our consultation.