One of the most commonly asked questions as a baby begins cranial remolding therapy is will their baby be able to sleep in their helmet. For most babies, the adjustment to sleeping and napping in their cranial helmet is a very easy transition. But in some cases, it can take a small adjustment period for babies to acclimate to sleeping in their helmet.
Here are a few steps you can take to help your baby transition to sleeping in their helmet.
Adhere to the Getting Started Schedule
As you get started with helmet therapy your doctor will share a “getting started” schedule. While your baby will eventually wear their helmet 23 hours each day, this won’t happen on day 1 of treatment. Stick to the gradual schedule your doctor prescribes and this will help your baby make the adjustment smoothly.
Keep Sleep Space Cool
One reason that babies sometimes struggle with their adjustment to sleeping in a cranial helmet is that it can slightly increase their body temperature. One way to help minimize this impact is to keep your baby’s room or sleep space cool. Lowering the temperature of your house or running a fan can help baby sleep more soundly as they adjust to their helmet.
Another way to help keep baby cool and comfortable while they sleep is to dress them in slightly lighter layers that you typically would. If you are still swaddling your baby, you might want to opt for a lighter blanket that you usually use. If your baby sleeps in a sleep sack or other sleepsuit, you may want to purchase a lighter version then you currently use.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that adjusting to any change takes time. If you are prepared for a little extra TLC when it comes time to put your baby down for sleep, it will help you bring extra patience when you might need it.
Don’t Give Up
Some parents say those first few days of not sleeping well were almost enough to make them give up on helmet therapy. Don’t let a minor initial setback cause you to stop treatment. Most babies make the transition within a couple of days so stick with it.
The majority of babies will make the transition to sleeping in their helmet with little to no trouble. If your baby has some early difficulty with sleeping in their helmet, stay patient, and stick with it. Those few months of treatment might seem long now, but it will be well worth it in the end!