Flat head syndrome or plagiocephaly is a condition where a baby's head flattens on one side due to repeated pressure.
Chiropractic care is often used to treat a baby’s head shape. It is a gentle and non-invasive approach that can help guide the baby’s skull shape into its correct form. This treatment involves manual manipulation of the infant’s spine, neck, and head by a trained chiropractor.
Treatment for plagiocephaly is typically non-invasive and includes positioning the baby to encourage growth in some regions of the skull. If these measures do not work, a doctor may recommend the use of a cranial orthosis. This is a lightweight, custom-made helmet that gently guides growth in the right direction.
Early treatment is best to prevent more serious issues later on. Therefore seeking medical advice is important if you think your child might be suffering from plagiocephaly.
In addition, parents should continue to encourage tummy time and variety in their baby's positioning to help prevent plagiocephaly from developing.
Plagiocephaly may be caused by extended time spent in the same position such as when babies sleep on their backs or are held in the same direction for too long. Plagiocephaly can also be caused by abnormalities in the skull or when a baby spends an extended amount of time lying on a flat surface due to medical issues.
Plagiocephaly is characterized by an asymmetrical shape to the back or side of your baby’s head.
Symptoms of plagiocephaly can include:
If plagiocephaly goes untreated, the misshapen head can become permanent. In more severe cases, it could lead to vision problems or other developmental delays.
Flat head syndrome can also cause other issues, such as:
Yes, positional plagiocephaly can be corrected. Some methods used to treat plagiocephaly include:
When treatment begins early, it is more effective.
Using specific techniques tailored to the infant, a trained chiropractor can help to correct misalignments of the head, neck, or spine to improve the shape of the baby's skull.
In addition to these manual manipulations, some chiropractors may prescribe exercises that can be done by the parent or caregiver at home to help strengthen the baby's neck muscles.
While chiropractic care does not cure a skull deformity, it can often relieve some associated symptoms and provide long-term positive results. In some cases, chiropractic adjustment may even help to prevent further deformity of the baby’s head.
Overall, chiropractic care for flat head syndrome can be a safe and effective way to manage a baby's head shape while working towards achieving more natural facial features. It is important to consult with an experienced and qualified chiropractor who is familiar with infant adjustments to ensure that the chiropractic treatment is done correctly. With the proper chiropractic adjustments, parents can help guide their baby toward a healthier head shape and a more normal facial appearance.
Plagiocephaly is typically diagnosed through physical examination and imaging techniques such as CT scans or MRIs. Most cases of plagiocephaly are considered mild and do not require treatment. In some cases, however, more severe forms of the condition may require corrective treatments such as helmet therapy or physical therapy.
Additionally, mild cases can be helped through repositioning and tummy time exercises that help to relieve pressure on the affected areas of the head.
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