Therapist: Rocking sleepers leading to more cases of infant deformities

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Physical therapist: Rocking bed sleepers can cause head, neck deformities in babies

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Physical therapist Andrea Spencer says that more and more parents are letting their infants sleep in rocking bed sleepers, which can lead to minor head and neck deformities.

She also says she hasn't seen this many children with Torticollis — a condition that causes muscles in the neck to become stiff.

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Jamie Shoemakers, in an interview with News Center 7’s Caroline Reinwald, said her youngest son, Lincoln, now 18 months, was born two weeks early in November 2016. Since her family was in between moving, they would allow Lincoln to sleep in a rocking baby sleeper at night since it was easiest.

About two months later, she noticed his head wasn't shaped the way it should be.

Doctors told the family a flat spot on Lincoln's head was seen, and he was diagnosed with Torticollis, which was mainly due to him sleeping in the rocking sleeper because he was slumped down and sleeping on one side of his head.

Over time, the condition isn't that serious, but if not fixed early enough there can be problems later in life.

Spencer worked with Lincoln at the Joint Twp. District Memorial Hospital for a couple of months while he wore a helmet to re-shape his head. It's also costly to fix because without insurance, Shoemakers said her family would have been charged more than $3,000 for only the helmet.

According to Dayton Children's Hospital:

** In 2016, there were 193 infants with Torticollis

** In 2017, there were 235 infants

** Through March, 116 infants.

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