October 14, 2022

What is Infant Torticollis and Should I Be Concerned?

What is Infant Torticollis and Should I Be Concerned?  


Infant or Congenital Torticollis is a common condition that usually results from the way an infant
was positioned in utero. Infants with torticollis have a tight neck muscle and may appear to
have their head tilted more to one side than the other. Sometimes infants with torticollis will have
a palpable lump in the sternocleidomastoid muscle, the muscle that runs from the back of the
head to the collar bone.


How Serious is an Infant Torticollis Diagnosis? 

While most cases of torticollis are mild, others are more severe and require physical therapy.
Torticollis, if not managed, can result in developmental delays, a flattening of the head, or
asymmetric facial features.


How Do You Treat Infant Torticollis?

Thankfully, torticollis usually resolves on its own, or fairly easily with some non-invasive
methods. Increasing your baby’s time on their stomach ( tummy time) can be helpful. Also
encouraging your infant to look to the opposite side from the tight muscle, with gentle stretching,
can help loosen the tight muscle. If your child has torticollis, pay attention to their sleeping and
feeding positions and make adjustments to encourage them to look to the tighter side if you can.
Please check out this website for some great tips on how to manage torticollis.


What Can Your MVP Provider Do for Your Baby

If we feel your infant needs additional support, we will refer you to a pediatric physical therapist
to work with you and your baby. Torticollis usually resolves by about six months of age. If you
are concerned about torticollis in your infant, please call MVP today to set up an appointment
with your provider. We are happy to help and make recommendations.

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