Mom’s Guide to Helmet Therapy for Baby’s Development


Helmet therapy, also known as cranial orthosis, is a treatment method used to correct the shape of a baby’s head. It is commonly used when a baby develops a flat spot on the back or side of their head, a condition known as plagiocephaly, or when a baby’s head is abnormally shaped, a condition known as brachycephaly. Helmet therapy involves using a custom-fitted helmet to gently reshape the baby’s skull as they grow. If your baby’s pediatrician has recommended helmet therapy, here’s everything you need to know about it.

Understanding Helmet Therapy

Helmets used in therapy are made of lightweight, yet durable materials. They are custom-made to fit your baby’s head and have padding on the inside for comfort. The helmets are typically worn 23 hours a day and are adjusted as the baby’s head grows and changes shape. The average duration of helmet therapy is around 3 to 6 months, but it can vary based on the severity of the baby’s condition.

Is Helmet Therapy Right for Your Baby?

If you notice a flat spot on your baby’s head or are concerned about their head shape, it’s important to schedule a visit with their pediatrician. The pediatrician will assess the severity of the condition and determine if helmet therapy is necessary. In some cases, repositioning techniques and exercises may be recommended first to see if the baby’s head shape improves without the need for a helmet.

Benefits of Helmet Therapy

Helmet therapy can have significant benefits for a baby’s development. By correcting the shape of the baby’s head, it can help prevent potential issues with jaw alignment, ear placement, and overall facial symmetry. Additionally, it can improve the baby’s head shape as they grow, leading to long-term aesthetic benefits.

What to Expect During Helmet Therapy

Once helmet therapy is recommended for your baby, you’ll work with a specialized orthotist who will take measurements of your baby’s head to create a custom helmet. The orthotist will also provide instructions on how to properly care for and clean the helmet. Regular check-up appointments will be scheduled to monitor your baby’s progress and make any necessary adjustments to the helmet.


How long does my baby need to wear the helmet each day?

The helmet is typically worn 23 hours a day, allowing for an hour-long break for cleaning and bathing.

Will the helmet cause my baby discomfort?

Initially, your baby may take some time to adjust to wearing the helmet, but most babies adapt quickly and comfortably.

Can my baby still engage in tummy time and play activities while wearing the helmet?

Absolutely! It’s important for your baby to continue with tummy time and play activities as usual while wearing the helmet.

How do I clean the helmet?

You can gently wash the helmet with mild soap and water, and allow it to air dry thoroughly before putting it back on your baby.


Helmet therapy can be an effective solution for correcting a baby’s head shape and promoting healthy development. If your pediatrician recommends helmet therapy for your baby, it’s important to follow their guidance and work with the orthotist to ensure the best possible outcome. With proper care and monitoring, helmet therapy can help your baby achieve a well-rounded head shape and support their overall growth and well-being.