How Much Does a Flat Head Helmet Cost?
A plagiocephaly helmet is used on babies with a medical condition known as plagiocephaly or flat-head syndrome. It is a condition described as an asymmetrical distortion or flattening of one side of the skull.
How much is it?
- On average, the cost depends on the location, brand of helmet, and manufacturer. Helmets cost anywhere from as low as $1,500 to more than $3,500 without health insurance.
- According to BabyFlatHead.org, the average price can be anywhere from $2,300 to $4,000.
What is going to be included?
- Plagiocephaly occurs when a baby’s rapidly developing head tries to expand and comes across some kind of resistance, either in the mother’s womb or after delivery as the baby’s head is pressed against a bed or some kind of flat resting surface. A baby’s skull is still vulnerable enough to be molded and may change shape if there is constant pressure on a particular area of their head. At around eight weeks old, you may notice that your baby’s head seems a bit wider that one ear is pushed forward on one side or that one brow is more noticeable on one side. Typically one side of the head is flatter than the other. ‘Plagio’ is a Greek word that means ‘slanting’ or ‘oblique’.
- Every Plagiocephaly helmet is created by private manufacturers. You may need to discuss with an orthotist who designs these helmets to make one for your baby.
- The helmet will be custom-made to apply pressure to the bulging portions of the skull and relieve pressure from other areas; it also allows growth in the flatter areas. The helmet may also decrease the possibility of your child sleeping on the flat part of their head.
- A Plagiocephaly helmet, which comes in customized models, comes in two types: active and passive. The active helmet is custom-made for each baby. The helmet requires molding or computer imaging to make a model of the head. The helmet is then made from this model. General pressure is placed on the bulging parts of the head. Due to the amount of pressure placed on the baby’s skull, weekly modifications are done by the orthotist. Due to the complexity of this helmet, it is quite expensive. The passive helmet puts less force to the skull and is typically available in many sizes. This helmet can be taken be bought off the shelf and then padded to conform to the baby’s head. There are official findings that this helmet is just as effective as the active helmet.
- Wearing a helmet may be started when the child is about five or six months old. To be quite effective, the helmet must be worn continuously up to 23 hours a day. This helmet therapy usually takes as long as three to six months to complete and may be used until the baby is around 14 months old.
What are the extra costs?
- If your child has a serious case, you may require more than one helmet and a remedy can be longer.
- Some types of helmets are designed to require the use of more than one helmet during treatment, while some others are designed to grow with the baby.
- Doctor visits will be necessary to track the progress of the baby’s head.
Tips to know:
- You may wash the baby’s head using a fragrant shampoo. Scrub the inside of the helmet with the recommended cleaning agent. Other cleaning products may leave a residue that may be harmful to the baby’s skin.
- Remove the helmet for the recommended time.
- You may decorate the helmet to lessen the appearance of being a medical device. Place colored stickers, bows, and other decors to make it appear baby-friendly. Match baby clothes with the color of the helmet for a stylish look.
How can I save money?
- Check with your insurance provider to see if they could shoulder a portion of the costs. If you don’t have a policy or are thinking about changing, consider getting multiple quotes from eHealthInsurance.com.
- Some clinics offer payment plans. Always inquire about discounts if you pay cash in advance.
- You may consider looking at some government institutions that help low-income families with regards to their health care and needs.
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