Babies who have skull deformation because they lie in the same position most of the time do not benefit from wearing a corrective helmet, finds research published today on bmj.com.
There was no meaningful difference in skull shape at the age of two years between children treated with therapy helmet and those who received no active treatment. Both groups showed similar improvements although only a quarter made a full recovery to a normal head shape, according to the team of researchers based in The Netherlands.
All parents in the helmet therapy group reported one or more side effects, the most common being problems with acceptance of the helmet, skin irritation, augmented sweating, unpleasant odor of the helmet, pain associated with the helmet, and feeling hindered from cuddling their child.
However, those parents also showed slightly higher satisfaction scores and a slightly lower anxiety state when their infants were 2 years old.
The study was funded by a grant from ZonMw, the Netherlands Organization for Health Research and Development. No other conflicts of interest were declared.