Plagiocephaly & Brachycephaly
Many infants develop abnormal head shapes and parents are not aware of their treatments options. Plagiocephaly (AKA Skull Asymmetry or Flat Head) is a malformation of the head marked by an oblique slant to the main axis of the skull.
Positional (or deformational) abnormal head shapes can be corrected without surgery and usually accompany torticollis. Many of the positional plagiocephaly cases can be helped with positional changes, chiropractic, craniosacral therapy and physical therapy. These are all non-invasive options and many parents prefer to use them.
Brachycephaly (AKA Flat head syndrome) can result from premature fusion of the sutures or from plagiocephaly. In cases where there is no fusion treatments with helmets and/or craniosacral therapy can be performed to help with cranial molding, if fusion has taken place depending on the case, surgery may be considered. The medical treatments for these conditions include the use of helmets, surgery, intensive physical therapy and drug therapy.
Treatment Triad: Alternative Care Plan for Plagiocephaly
- Chiropractic- Dr. Amber Brooks, DC is a Board Certified Pediatric Chiropractor (ICPA) with gentle and effective care. This portion of the triad will address the diagnoses and treatment of any musculoskeletal problems, these are usually a result of the birthing process. Please read more about chiropractic here.
- Craniosacral Therapy (CST)- CST is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of a physiological body system called the craniosacral system—comprised of the membranes, cranial bones, cerebrospinal fluid and the tissue that surrounds and protects the brain and spinal cord. Using a soft touch generally no greater than five grams, or about the weight of a nickel the tension in the body that has caused the asymmetry can be reduced. Please read more about CST here.
- Physical/Occupational Therapy- This helps speed up range of motion with stretching, teaches families positioning options and promotes additional aid.
Chiropractic treatment can take from 4 weeks to several months depending on age, complexity and any underlying issues. Improvement is typically seen when recommended treatment plan is followed and many times we are one part of your treatment team. This is important to diagnose early and get treatment for a faster recovery. Please see your pediatrician or physical therapist for a proper diagnosis if needed. Early treatment can keep your child from developing more complex developmental issues. The prognosis is great for those with no congenital/genetic issues and we strive to work in conjunction with your other clinicians.
If your child has a skull asymmetry we may be able to help and/or make a proper referral.