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Saturday, October 10, 2009


Connor spent 120 days in the NICU not being held as much as he would have been, had he been here at home with us.  When we brought him home, he had a flat spot developing on the back of his head.

In the last 6 months, it's gotten to a point where we felt it was time to get him checked out.  Sure, he gets lots of tummy time, physical therapy, and we have always worked to reposition him while he's sleeping.  While we've seen an improvement lately in the shape of his head, our window to help correct the issue is closing fast.  We felt if we didn't act soon, it might be too late.  After all, the last thing we want for him is a problem due to a misshapen head later on in life. 

A few weeks ago, we took him to Cranial Tech for an evaluation.

They took a few mug shots...

And determined that he has a moderate to severe case of brachycephaly.  I don't know that I agree that his current head shape is that serious, but if that's the diagnosis they needed for the insurance company to approve treatment, so be it.  And, I concede that they're the experts.

So, next week, Connor will go in for his DSi scan, and 14 days later he'll be fitted for his helmet.
Which he will wear 23 hours a day.

That's right, Connor will be wearing a helmet 23 hours a day.

For the first little while, we'll be visiting Cranial Tech about once a week for fittings and adjustments.  Right now, they're telling us that treatment time may be as long as 7 months, with potentially a 2nd band/helmet for another 7 months.  We're hoping that was worst-case scenario.

Another mom did a great job of explaining a little of what we're in for.
Check out her video...

Are we really up to 14 months of band/helmet wearing?
If Connor's head shape is "normal" to us after the 1st band, that might be all we're willing to do.  
We'll have to see.

Are we looking forward to this experience?
Uh, no.

Will we do this for Connor's sake?
Of course!

We know we can do this... it'll be an adjustment, but in no time at all we'll get used to it, right?
If we survived the NICU experience, I know we can, I know we can...

Are we mostly nervous for how well Connor will adjust to wearing his helmet?

Are we trying to think happy thoughts about what's in store?
Uh huh.

Are we planning to decorate his helmet?
You betcha!

After all, if he goes bald like his dad, we want him to have as normal a head shape as possible.  ;)


Megan B ♥ said...

OH, blech! You can TOTALLY do this! And I can't wait to see how you decorate it!! He's going to look ADORABLE! I know that we would decorate it as a BYU football helmet :)

Christy said...

That video was so cute!

A helmet will seem like nothing after what you've been through already. I'm sure you will make it pretty dang cute! I can't wait to see pictures.

Audrey said...

Another helmet idea... http://gardners4ever.blogspot.com/2009/04/kade-is-5-months-old-and-so-much-has.html

:) He'll still be the dang cutest kid ever!!

tiburon said...

Ethan and Avery both had to wear helmets. Ethan's was for over 9 months - because we caught it so late. They thought he had craniosynostosis - but after all the tests it was determined to be positional plagiocephaly.

We watched for it extra close in Avery and she got her helmet at 6 months was out of it by 10 months old.

It isn't that bad - as long as you can get over the comments from strangers.

I KID YOU NOT. When Ethan got his helmet we went to church in our ward for the first time and had one of the members come up and this was the conversation:

Him: Hey how you doin?
Me: Good.
Him: How are things?
Me: Good.
Him: Soooooo is that the same baby you have always had?
Me: No. We traded him in for a defective model.


Then I overheard a pregnant lady that looked like she was about to pop in the grocery store turn to her husband and say "I sure hope our baby doesn't turn out like that..."


Karen said...

I have had two nephews wear helmets...I think both were decorated with their fave sports teams, and it made my kids want one too!

It will be so worth it, like everything else we do for our children! It will be the cutest thing ever!

Adam & Kristen Birkmeyer said...

Oh, you guys got this. I know the purpose of the helmet isn't to look "cute", but I'm sure Connor will pull it off and be SO cute in it. That is a long diagnosis for how long he'll have to wear it. Hopefully after the first round he'll be looking good enough to bag the second round!

Omgirl said...

I have a good friend who's baby girl had to wear the helment. She was a twin and had been smooshed in such a way in utero that her neck was stronger on one side. Once she was born it always kept her head down on that side and she developed a mishapen head. But after a few months with the helmet, you could hardly tell. The helmet did wonders! There will be some stares, of course, but you're doing the right thing!

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