Jul
02

“Twisted neck” syndrome is gone

Posted in Mom Stuff
by Melissa Linebrink

It’s over … the one-hour weekly physical therapy sessions for my soon-to-be 1-year-old daughter have finally come to an end.

As of today, Katie was discharged from physical therapy where she had been going since she was almost 5 months old due to torticollis (aka “twisted neck” syndrome).

And I don’t know who is happier, me or her.

Soon after the twins were born, I noticed Katie favored the left side of her neck. A close friend of mine’s son suffered from the same condition the first year of his life as well. It all depends on how a baby lays inside the womb. In Katie’s case, her twin brother wasn’t helping the situation inside the womb. For probably the last three months they were inside of me, Katie’s head never left my cervix, thus creating the condition torticollis.

Seth and I tried everything we could think of to make her face right. We rolled up blankets and placed them on her left side, we laid her on her side, we held her in an awkward position when feeding her bottles and we even placed her brother on her right side – figuring she’d at least like to see a friendly face.

Nope.

For the first nearly five months of her life, we tried everything to force her little neck to look right.

Finally, I consulted her pediatrician. However, she wasn’t very convinced that physical therapy was the answer. I felt differently, and generally disagreed with the pediatrician. After all, I was living with Katie on a daily basis and rarely saw her turn her neck to the right, not the pediatrician.

Thankfully, with our insurance we did not need a referral to see a physical therapist in our network.

I found a local physical therapist who has worked with Katie nearly every week since mid-November. The therapist gave us goals to work toward. She taught us how to stretch her neck without hurting her. She taught us how to teach Katie to crawl (Normally babies pick this skill up on their own, but since Katie’s neck muscles were tight, crawling was a difficult task for her in the beginning.).

I have to admit, there were weeks when Katie was not a fan of the therapist. She’d fuss, cry and fuss some more. But eventually, she got used to going and it turned into more of a play date than any type of “work.”

I on the other hand, had Derek to contend with for an hour. Derek is the child who in the beginning was content sitting in his car seat, playing with his hands or toys. But in recent weeks, he wanted to be set free from my grip. He wanted to crawl and play and explore the room while Katie was working. I decided to take him into the lobby. Big mistake. Big room generally means lots of “no-no’s.”

But, alas, Katie was discharged today as she has reached all of her goals. She can do anything now except walk. And, if I am being honest, I hope it stays that way just a little while longer – Mommy needs some down time before the next milestone shows up, which can be any day now I have been told.

 

 

 

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