This condition is also known as positional head deformity or plagiocephaly. Firstly, there’s no need to panic, there are plenty of things that can be done to help your little one. The only time serious intervention is needed is for true craniosynostosis. This is where the sutures of the skull close too early and do not allow normal brain and skull growth. This is quite rare but your chiropractor will be able to pick up if this is the case. We would refer you to the right person as needed. This blog, written by chiropractor Beccy Norman, will hopefully put your mind at rest and give you a few helpful tips to help out.
This is also known as plagiocephaly. PHD (Positional head deformity) is a flattening of the skull bones, particularly the bone at the back (occiput) in an infant. It is often missed at birth and slowly becomes more apparent , usually by three months due to increased skull growth. This is due to a variety of factors that I’ve listed below. The skull bones of an infant are very soft and this leaves them much more susceptible to deformation. The good news is that nearly all PHD’s are just a cosmetic issue and only 10% will persist past 6 months.
There are different factors that contribute to the formation of the shape change and most of these actually happen through habits post birth. However, there are some factors that research has found to contribute during time in the womb:
Once our little one’s are born they spend most of their time, eating , sleeping and being changed! The way these are all done is exactly what can contribute to flattening of the skull.
rebalance the pregnant pelvis to give baby the best possible environment to grow. (just check out our pregnancy section on the website!)
If you have any questions or worries the best thing to do is just to get a complimentary spinal scan booked in with us to have a chat and so we can have a look at what’s going on and hopefully put your mind at ease!
Chaitow, L., 2005. Cranial manipulation: theory and practice: osseous and soft tissue approaches. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Hutchison, B.L., Stewart, A.W. and Mitchell, E.A., 2009. Characteristics, head shape measurements and developmental delay in 287 consecutive infants attending a plagiocephaly clinic. Acta Paediatrica, 98(9), pp.1494-1499.
Miller, R.I. and Clarren, S.K., 2000. Long-term developmental outcomes in patients with deformational plagiocephaly. Pediatrics, 105(2), pp.e26-e26.
van Wijk, R.M., van Vlimmeren, L.A., Groothuis-Oudshoorn, C.G., Van der Ploeg, C.P., IJzerman, M.J. and Boere-Boonekamp, M.M., 2014. Helmet therapy in infants with positional skull deformation: randomised controlled trial. Bmj, 348, p.g2741.
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Reflex Spinal Health are a passionate, dynamic spinal health team. We are committed to help as many in our community of Reading, Berkshire and South Oxfordshire to enjoy the vitality of great health, to reach their health goals and feel truly alive! Our chiropractors and osteopaths offer the highest standards of care in a superb environment.