Abnormal Head Shape/Plagiocephaly in Garland, TX
Deformational plagiocephaly is the medical term for an abnormal head shape that results from repeated positioning of a specific area of the skull. Parents in Garland, TX, can turn to the International Craniofacial Institute to find an accurate assessment of their child’s condition and the best treatment options.
The Head Shape/Plagiocephaly Clinic, located at the International Craniofacial Institute, puts emphasis on prevention and treatment measures that are safe and effective. They rely on up-to-date techniques that are as conservative as possible, limiting children’s exposure to unnecessary medications and procedures. Neck stretches and “tummy time” activities are part of many treatment plans. Additionally, our team will make sure that your child’s head shape abnormality wasn’t caused by a more serious condition.
What is Abnormal Head Shape?
Abnormal head shape, often referred to as deformational plagiocephaly, has a variety of causes associated with specific behaviors or conditions:
- In-utero. Children that remain in the same position for a long time can often have an abnormal head shape.
- Premature birth. Cranial bones are softer, making it easier for them to be affected by staying in the same position.
- Torticollis or Sternocleidomastoid imbalance. Some abnormalities result in your child’s neck remaining in a specific position. Often, this presents as a constant tilt to one side and is the result of a limited range of motion.
- Prolonged positioning. Bouncy seats, infant carriers, and swings may result in your child remaining in the same position for too long.
- Insufficient tummy time. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that infants sleep on their backs. However, it’s very important that all infants spend some time on their tummies, especially in early infancy. This time should always be supervised.
Abnormal head shape can be treated without helmets or helmet therapy, but the most effective window for treatment is before your child’s first birthday. During the first year, cranial bones are still malleable, which makes it easier for them to reshape with sufficient tummy time and neck stretches. With those measures, your child’s head will continue to reshape itself through infancy and the toddler years.
If you notice that your child’s head tends to tilt to one side more than the other or that their head shape is wide or long and narrow, contact us today. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have.