Monday, August 20, 2012

the DOC Band (...journey toward a round head)

Pretty quickly after birth, Leo began to favor looking toward his right side.  Little did we realize that would cause his skull to quickly become misshaped.  By two months of age, we began doing everything we could to get him interested in looking toward the left. With no luck!

In July, when he was four months old, our pediatrician referred him to a wonderful place named Cranial Techonologies.  We had no idea how much Leo's skull had been affected until it was pointed out to us. He had flattening on the right back side, flattening on the front left, facial assymetry, and his right ear was shifted higher than the left.  When he had photos done, each side of his face (when put side by side) looked like two different babies.  It was so odd!

We also didn't know the changes in his skull has a diagnosis -- Plagiocephaly.  There can be several causes, but for Leo it was primarily due to "back sleeping". With Positional Plagiocephaly, normal growth of the skull is restricted because of persistent, chronic pressure of lying against that area. In Leo's case, the right back side of his head. This can also cause the brain to shift inside the skull, causing other areas of skull growth to shift - like in Leo's case.

Have you noticed how many babies you've seen with these little helmets on?  Since 1992, babies have been given the recommendation of black sleeping to lower the risk of SIDS.  While SIDS has decreased by 50 percent, Plagiocephaly has increased six-fold with the 700 hours that an average two month old spends on their back sleeping.  The solution?  A custom "molding helmet", to redirect the growth of the skull. 

Here we are at Cranial Technologies, with Leo going through the first step toward a custom molding helmet. Our little "robber"...!

And one week later, his not-so-happy-face in his new helmet.

As you can see, he's getting used to the idea. Just a little...!

Maybe adding a little Boy Bling will help...

Or some loving support from big brother can make things better :)

And so he continues... the journey toward a round head!


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