Wednesday 15 April 2015

Hudson: Helmet Journey Begins

Having a new baby after the passing of another baby is very stressful. We were so happy to welcome Hudson to our family but it has been a very worrisome journey. We are very aware of everything he does, especially at night during his sleep. The back to sleep campaign has been something we have always abide by but in Hudson's case, sleeping on his back caused his head to be misshaped.

Hudson's head the day of the helmet fitting, April 8 2015
We started to notice Hudson's flat head when he was a few months old and were carefully watching it in hopes it would correct on its own. As a newborn Hudson like many babies spent a lot of time on his back or sleeping on his back. His soft skull unfortunately molded to this shape from where ever he slept or from being held. 

Baby Hudson's head a few months ago prior to repositioning
We started to learn about flat heads which is clinically called plagiocephaly and brachycephaly and decided we wanted to do something about it. 

Plagiocephaly: is the most common type and occurs when the head is flattened on one side, causing it to look asymmetrical and distorted.  The ears may be misaligned and when seen from above the head, looks like a parallelogram.

Brachycelphaly: is when the back of the head becomes flattened, causing the head to widen. To compensate, the front of the skull sometimes bulges out.

To help shape Hudson's head we decided to undergo helmet therapy. The helmet helps reshape the head in the areas of concern. It allows the head to grow in the flatter area. The head is scanned and we were provided some baseline measurements to work towards. 

Hudson has both plagiocephaly on the right side of his head and brachycephaly on the left side. I often held Hudson in my right arm, being left handed and I think this contributed to the flatness. The flatness does not affect the baby's development it is more of a cosmetic concern. 
Hudson's head already start to round out on its own prior to the helmet
We went in to get Hudson's head scanned at the beginning of March and decided to move forward after our vacation. We were told his head has a moderate level of flatness and would be a great candidate for helmet therapy. It has been 5 weeks since we originally scanned and Hudson's head has already improved on its own without the helmet having grown 9mm but to ensure it properly rounds, we decided to go forward with the helmet. We were told he would wear it 3 to 4 months, perhaps even less depending on his growth.

Hudson in his helmet!
Today was Day 1 of wearing the helmet and so far so good. Hudson doesn't seem to mind it. He has yet to wear it for a nap or to sleep, so we will see how it goes. We decided to get a baby blue helmet to match his baby blue eyes! He is such a happy boy and doesn't seem to notice the helmet!  Fingers crossed it continues this way!

We love our baby and his head but want to help him any way we can, just as we would hope if he needs braces on his teeth we could get him braces.

Day 1 - Doesn't seem to mind, 1 hour on 1 hour off

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