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Torticollis Treatment
In White Plains, NY. Servicing Westchester, NY & Fairfield County, CT.

What Is Torticollis?

Torticollis is the turning or tilting of a baby’s head that results from a tightness of the muscles on one side of the neck. One type of Torticollis, called “Congenital Torticollis,” can be diagnosed right after birth. Congenital Torticollis can result from birth trauma, atypical development of some of the neck muscles or the position of the baby in the womb. When we see babies with Congenital Torticollis, we can start them right away on our successful Torticollis treatment program.

How Does Torticollis Develop?

As a baby begins to get control of their neck muscles at about six to eight weeks, they may then start to show a marked preference for turning their head in one direction. A pediatrician may refer to this as “acquired Torticollis.” Torticollis can develop gradually if a child spends long periods sitting in the same kind of baby seat or if they frequently sleep in awkward positions 

When a successful Torticollis treatment is started as soon as possible, this can prevent:

  • Plagiocephaly (flattening of the head) 
  • Scoliosis
  • Slower Development of Motor Skills
  • Feeding Problems
  • Alteration of Facial Features
  • Pain

How Parents Can Identify Torticollis

Parents may notice that their newborn babies have a consistent tilt or preference to turn their head to one side, long before they gain control of their head and neck muscles. Nursing mothers may observe that their baby always wants to nurse on the same side. This preference is a clue that the baby isn’t comfortable turning their head in the other direction.

Here are some signs that your baby may have Torticollis:

  • They will turn their heads to look in only one direction. 
  • They may refuse to look at objects or faces on the side with the tighter muscles. 
  • They may only reach for toys on their preferred side.

As your pediatrician evaluates your child’s posture and development during your well baby visits, they may alert you to signs of Torticollis. They may ask you if you have noticed any of the symptoms above. 

If you or your pediatrician notice any of these signs, call us so we can explain our effective and successful Torticollis therapy program. If you are in the White Plains, Westchester or Connecticut areas, please contact us so we can provide your baby and you with greater comfort and relief. 

Treating Torticollis at Physical Therapy 4 Kids

Most children can overcome Torticollis if Physical Therapy is started promptly. Our Pediatric Physical Therapists have extensive experience helping children lengthen the shortened muscles on the involved side of their necks and learn to function with their head in the midline.

We have so many ways to help children with Torticollis. Stretching exercises, tummy time on pillows or wedges, or sitting on a therapy ball are all effective methods of lengthening and strengthening neck muscles. These exercises can be done with newborns with guidance from our expert Pediatric Physical Therapists.

It is essential that a family augments a child’s clinical progress with home treatment. We welcome a parent or caregiver to accompany a child while they are being treated for Torticollis. We have found that this is the best way to enable the family to accurately continue treatment between visits to our clinic so the child can achieve the fastest results.

Every one of our Physical Therapy visits lasts a full 45 minutes to maximize the amount of treatment time our kids get to accelerate their improvements.

How Long Does It Take to Correct Torticollis?

Torticollis is generally easier and faster to treat when it is diagnosed and treated early. We treat newborn babies once a head preference is noted. The ideal time to start Physical Therapy for Torticollis is between newborn to 3 months. Cases of Torticollis can be resolved in three to six months, though some cases may require more time.

If you think it is possible that your child may be experiencing Torticollis, please call us at 914-421-9392 or fill out the form below.

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