Tuesday, May 4, 2010
2 years old, 1 year post Docband
A lot of people have asked us about post band. I know I posted a 1½ yr update but I wanted to show pictures (without his bicycle helmet) of what he looks like today. He wore the band, only 1 Docband from http://www.cranialtech.com/ from 9 months until 12 months and 1 day. He started off in the severe range for assymetry in his head as well as his skull base and ears. He also had some, albeit barely, noticable eye assymetry. When he finished he still measured in the "mild plagiocephaly" catagory but was (barely) in the "normal" range. So a 2nd band was not recommended but we really thought he might have needed one. Very significant improvement was seen though and the difference was very noticable, however the fact that his head was left a bit lumpy didnt help the decision. In the end we did not do a 2nd helmet. About 6 mo later the lumpiness had been gone for months but we still weren't sure about a 2nd band so obviously some of that minor was still visible. But 1 year post band he looked great. I know exactly what to look for so can still look and find it but the average person would never see it now (whereas I am positive they would have before).
I have talked to a lot of people who get false information that kids heads just round out on their own. From personal experience I have seen minor cases of brachicephaly (just a flat spot in the back, no "asssymetry or "crookedness" and no facial changes) resolve on their own once the kids are upright. But without other aggressive alternatives treatments and/or aggressive repositioning I have not heard of any cases of this happening with moderate or more plagiocephly. So this makes it very disheartening to know that some doctors are saying it will. I have also talked to many teens, parents of older children and even adults who still have plagiocephaly because of lack or treament before the age of 2 that are very unhappy about the head shape. And, before we banded Joey we started watching, and once I started looking I was surprised by the # of people I saw in public or even famous basketball players, news anchors, or other TV personalities that even head plagiocephaly now. That is what convinced me that babies (or at least not all) babies outgrow plagiocephaly and I wasn't about to risk it with my child's head. If I am willing to put my teen through 2 years and a similiar cost to get braces just for crooked teeth I would certainly be willing to do the same (and it isn't even painful like braces) for something even more noticable like their entire head.
Looking back on our experience as well as these pictures also made me think of 2 things and wonder if the assymetry, especially in the skull base which can effect the eyes, ears, jaw, neck, etc could have contributed to these. First, thinking back, somewhere in the time he wore the helmet his GERD resolved and I wonder about that. Secondly, looking at the pictures I can now tell there was significant improvement in his overbite. He still has a slight overbite, but looking at the pictures, it was a lot more than slight back then.
Anyway here are the pictures you've been waiting for, 1 and 2 yrs post band. So this is when he was 2 and 3.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Looking back on his helmet we get asked a lot about peoples reaction, how he handled it, etc. And the truth is there was no trauma at all. He noticed the band the first time they put it on, when he was 9 months old, he grabbed for it but did not cry. He was easily distracted by toys and forgot it was even there. The 1st time he had to sleep in it was in the car, it took a few minutes of fussing (which he tends to do anyway) to get comfortable and then he was out. He had no problems getting comfortable that night. By the end of the week if he saw his band off his head he tried to put it back on. So for those that think it may be traumatizing, does that sound traumatizing? Despite his sensitive skin he had no additional problems with the band either. Yes we got looks and questions, we were very lucky though and did not get negative comments at all. However I also did not care what people I didn't know, and would probably never see again, thought anyway. And even if I did, my son is the most important thing.
So here are some of the special pics to look back on, to see he is quite happy with his band.
Saturday, July 4, 2009
Well, when he got his band off his head seemed "lumpy" but I was told that would go away. It was gone before he even got his after pictures and measurements done 1½ wks later. However, he still had some flatness, it was most noticable on top and some ear assymetry which was most noticable from the rear. I debated long and hard requesting a 2nd band even though CT didn't recommend one and everyone thought he looked great. My husband did not feel he needed one though. 7-8 months later though, as he got bigger his head got bigger, it was still there staring at me. Even my husband commented and we debated having his after cast poured and taking him back for measurements. But then his hair started to grow. I am not sure if that is what really did it but things started to look better. I stopped noticing it every time I looked at him. Until he got his 1st haircut on his 2nd birthday, that seemed to accentuate it a bit. But then his hair grew back and even thickened up. Now I don't notice it unless I look specifically for it, I can only find it b/c I know exactly where and how to look. Noone else can tell he ever had it. He can wear glasses, hats, bike helmets, etc without noticing. Even when I cut his hair myself and he ended up with a shorter 1" clipper cut (not quite a crew cut) it wasn't noticable.
On a lighter note though...I really worried about him getting the band beforehand. He had sensitive skin (surprisingly this wasn't any harder to deal with in the band), wasn't that great of a sleeper at the time (no worse in the band), and hated hats. The latter is the funniest b/c he now loves hats, starting post band he became addicted to baseball caps. Not even that long ago he came across his band and tried to put it on. And just yesterday he wore his bike helmet around for at least an hour.
Monday, December 17, 2007
And here we are, at the end. Joey has gone from a moderate to severe assymetrical measurements of 15mm, 15mm, and 17mm assymetry to 4mm, 5mm and 6mm assymetry which falls in the mild catagory. Here are his before and after pictures. The pictures on the left are what he looked like 1 month before the band and the pictures on the right are what he looked like 1½ wks after the band.
After his themed birthday party, the weekend before his birthday we switched to a simple birthday sticker band. We had plans for a few more but he graduated the day after his birthday so his band sits on his "headsicle" dressed for his birthday.