Prevention of Torticollis in babies
What is Torticollis?
Torticollis (or wry-neck) is an increasingly common condition in which a baby’s head rotation is restricted to one side. The restriction is often muscular and can have a number of causes including during pregnancy or from a strain during the birthing process. Babies who are born from Caesarean Section operation can also develop torticollis.
Torticollis simply means ’stiff neck’. Torticollis in babies usually means the head and neck is stiff to one side and not the other.
It can often be noticed that babies have a preferred side on which to breast feed. If a baby prefers mums right, for example, it often means her baby is more comfortable rotating the head to the left to latch-on to the right breast.
If your baby doesn’t like feeding on one of your breasts, your baby may be having difficulty rotating to that breast, due to torticollis.
The same applies to a baby lying on a flat surface such as a mattress. If the head will rotate more easily to one side invariably the head will usually be looking to that side. This may also be a sign of Torticollis and it also means there is a constant pressure from a flat mattress in one spot of your babies head thereby resulting in the development of a flat spot leading to 'flat head syndrome’ or ‘positional plagiocephaly’.
Preventing Torticollis in babies
Repositioning of the head and the use of 'tummy time' are important things you should be doing to help prevent and treat torticollis and ensure your babies neck muscles develop properly.
In addition you should consider the use of a SleepCurve© mattress.
The curve of a SleepCurve© mattress allows your baby’s head to turn freely and spreads the weight of the skull across shoulders and neck. This makes it easier for your baby to turn their head and use their neck muscles.
If your baby is on a SleepCurve mattress the shape of the baby’s head is cradled by the shape of the mattress which not only reduces the risk of your baby developing torticollis it also reduces the pressure on the skull and helps prevent the onset of ‘flat head syndrome’. For more information on Flat head Syndrome click here.
The SleepCurve© mattress is the only mattress designed with the curve to help prevent and correct torticollis.