need opinions (pic heavy)

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Joined: 06/09/06
Posts: 3264
need opinions (pic heavy)

So Brian was born with mild torticollis (neck muscle tighter on one side of his neck due to cramped conditions in the womb and pressure from his twin - super common in baby A's). Thankfully, just one physical therapy appt and doing exercises with him at home has resolved it completely. Unfortunately, he spent the first several weeks of his life flattening the back left side of his head. By the time I caught it and asked his doctor about it, it was too late.

We've been aggressively doing 're-positioning' with him - he sleeps on his right side and I do everything in my power to keep him off the back of his head when he's awake. I met with the 'helmet people' at the children's hospital and she assured me that the only consequence of leaving his head misshapen is that his head will be misshapen (it's not so severe that he will have hearing or jaw or vision problems). So it's a cosmetic issue. She also won't give me her opinion about whether she recommends a helmet or not. She took measurements and pictures and is having us do the re-positioning and come back in 6 weeks (which is now 2 weeks away). She wants us to be prepared to make a decision at that time about what we want to do.

Also, insurance won't cover this and it's $1500 to do it. I took pictures a month ago and then more pictures earlier this week. It's such a difficult decision. I know from following the story of another pg.org member who went through this with her son that the first helmet they got didn't work and they had to drive several hours to do another kind of helmet. That's not an option for us, but it definitely opened my eyes to the possibility that we could spend a whole lot of money and not get good results, which makes the decision even harder. I'm also having a hard time being objective about this, from being able to tell whether it's gotten any better and whether or not it's bad enough that we should go the helmet route.

So I need some honest opinions. Do you see any improvement? Would you do a helmet if this were your child?

Here are pics from a month ago (sorry the quality isn't great, our camera really resists taking pics of his head!). It's REALLY difficult to capture this on film, too, I wish you all could see it in person!:

And pics from earlier this week (please ignore the scratches on his head - despite our constant trimming of his nails, he's always scratching at his head):

butterflykissesx6's picture
Joined: 06/28/07
Posts: 509

In looking at these pictures, if you weren't actually looking for something I'm not sure that I would even notice it. (especially the last 2 pictures) I believe it has improved from the 1st photos...I looked at them again Smile

HorseMomma's picture
Joined: 06/29/04
Posts: 858

"butterflykissesx6" wrote:

In looking at these pictures, if you weren't actually looking for something I'm not sure that I would even notice it. (especially the last 2 pictures) I believe it has improved from the 1st photos...I looked at them again Smile

I agree...

laurensmitty1982's picture
Joined: 07/30/06
Posts: 1117

His head does look better. Its hard to tell because the picture is not straight down because he is not looking straight on. The bump on the right looks better in the recent pics to compared to the old ones.

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Honestly? His head looks fine to me now. Once he gets hair, I bet it won't be noticeable. If you had just posted the pics without the background story, I probably wouldn't have noticed it at all.

Joined: 06/22/10
Posts: 5602

the only ones i can see it are in the straight down shots. i don't even notice it in the others. in the first straight down (brown shirt) you can see a huge difference from that one to the latest straight down shot.

momW's picture
Joined: 09/29/09
Posts: 5634

I think it's looking great. I really do see an improvement. If it were me, honestly, I wouldn't do anything. I really don't think there's any need. Clara has a lopsided head. She slept on her right side in the crook of my arm for so long that the top, right side of her head is pertty obviously bigger than the other side.

(Clara can find a sharp edge on her freshly trimmed nails everytime!! Drives me crazy. She always looks like she's been out fighting with the cats. She likes to scratch up her nose though.)

Joined: 10/17/09
Posts: 631

I have to completely agree w the rest of pp's - I can barely even tell in those last pics for sure!! But if you had just posted those pics randomly, I wouldn't have even noticed the shape of his head Smile

Newlywed630's picture
Joined: 07/20/07
Posts: 770

I'm pretty sure this is what my baby cousin had/has. I do not think it looks that serious. I hardly notice. I bet he is out growing it... if it can be outgrown? Either way, it looks just fine in my opinion. Smile

AnnaRO's picture
Joined: 07/06/08
Posts: 7033

I think if you keep doing the repositioning it will go away completely. Even if it doesn't go away completely I think there is no way you will be able to tell once he has hair. I think that the little cute swirl of hair might be drawing attention to it, but it isn't bad at all and it has definitely gotten better.

jolly11sd's picture
Joined: 02/02/05
Posts: 3327

I think there has been a ton of improvement for sure!

rubber_da_glove's picture
Joined: 12/31/07
Posts: 1527

Tobey had the exact same problem. And his head is flatter on the left side too. You can only tell if you look from a funny angle above him. I have also been working on re-positioning him and now he's spending less and less time on his back it's got LOADS better.Now his hair is starting to grow you can hardly see it at all. I'm not worried, everyone has got a funny shaped head really Smile

You can hardly see anything on the pictures you've taken!! looks nearly "normal"

Anyway...Tobey's head looks just like Brian's Smile

Vstarr's picture
Joined: 04/08/08
Posts: 895

I can see a big improvement from the 1st set of pics to the 2nd. His head looks just fine to me now, and I bet it will get even better if you keep up the repositioning.

TiggersMommy's picture
Joined: 02/14/10
Posts: 6043

My first thought after looking at the first photo was "ooh, I hope it's improved." If I'd just looked at that one, I'd say go for the helmet. But, it has improved significantly! If it continues to improve by even 25%, I'd think no one will ever notice. Even with the way it is now you probably won't be able to tell once he gets hair. The only concern I'd have is if you have baldness in your family. My mom's side has baldness genes. If he were my child, I'd see where we were at in 2 weeks and then maybe continue repositioning for another month. If the extra 6 weeks didn't give any additional improvement, I would think about springing for the helmet. With just the tiniest bit of improvement though, I'd skip it and feel perfectly fine about it. Just don't ever tell him about it or he might obsess about it. I know I would .... but I'm vain like that. Seriously though, if just 1 month of repositioning has done that much to improve it, I'd think he'll be the perfect little handsome man without resorting to a helmet.