Aug 24, 2008

Cereal Time!

Last Sunday we gave Scarlett her first taste of rice cereal. I think she did pretty good! The video is a bit of an optical illusion…you can hear me talking, but you see Chris's arm feeding her. So just know my arms aren't that hairy. Oh, and the mommy voice is back…consider yourself warned!

Doc Band

As I mentioned in a previous post, our pediatrician, Dr. Lanman, referred Scarlett to Cranial Technologies in Dallas at her 4 month check-up so that they could evaluate the back of her head which has become flattened. We went on Wednesday and luckily my dad, aka Pa, went with us since Chris had to work. Based on their assessment of Scarlett which includes measurements and pictures, they have determined she will need the corrective helmet to remold her little flat head. My poor baby!

Cranial Technologies has named their corrective helmets "Doc Bands." Scarlett's condition is called "plagiocephaly" which results from external forces applied to the soft infant skull and "brachycephaly" in which the head flattens uniformly, causing a wider and shorter shape.

Although these conditions are caused by her sleeping on her back, they are unsure why only some children who sleep on their backs develop flat spots on their heads. She also favors looking to the right which has also added to the flattening. The condition cannot harm her brain or its development. However, if left untreated, she could have problems with face and ear asymmetry as well as vision and jaw/teeth problems.

Even though doctors consider this a medical condition and procedure, many insurance companies refuse to cover the cost of the corrective helmet, usually claiming that it's a cosmetic device. And because when it rains it pours, our insurance company has denied coverage, of course. We are going to appeal their decision, and believe me, they will be SICK of me by the end of this. Until our appeal process is over, and they make a definitive decision, we cannot get her in the helmet. We are unsure of how long we are willing to fight their decision because we want to get her in the helmet and get it over with!

Once she's in the helmet, the molding process should take around 6-12 weeks. My niece, London, also had to have a Doc Band so I guess that's why I'm able to handle this so well. My main concern is that Scarlett will be uncomfortable as she will have to wear the helmet 23 hours a day! But we'll deal with that when the time comes. She has beat jaundice and meningitis so I'm sure she's tough enough for this too! We would so appreciate your prayers as we endure yet another medical battle.

Here's my sweet London when she had her Doc Band!

Aug 17, 2008

Play Time!

I realize my "mommy voice" is quite annoying, but Scarlett seems to like it! Just know that you've been warned!

Aug 16, 2008

4 Month Check-Up

We took Scarlett to her 4 month check-up appointment this week to find out that she weighs 17 pounds 13 ounces!!! For those of you who don't know anything about babies, let me tell you this is big!! She is above the 95th percentile for weight. She's my little chug-a-lug! She is 25.5 inches long which puts her in the 90th percentile for length.

She's right on track for her development at this stage. For example, she can hold her head upright and still when in a supported sitting position, she can grasp small toys, she reaches for objects, she notices moving objects, she can bear weight on her legs, and she babbles!

And of course, the shots she received were traumatic for her, Chris, and me! UGH!!!!

Also, we were referred to Cranial Technologies Inc. so they can check out her head which is flat in the back. This is common these days because of the huge push for babies to sleep on their backs in order to help prevent SIDS. She may have to wear a little helmet for a period of time in order to round out and reshape her head. My niece, London, had to wear one too so I guess flat heads run on my side of the family! : ) Anyway, more to come about this later.....our consultation appointment is this Wednesday. Please keep baby Scarlett in your prayers!

Aug 11, 2008

Bumper Pad Thoughts

When I was pregnant and began designing Scarlett’s nursery, I registered for a bumper pad to go around the crib. I had heard by word of mouth that they can be dangerous, but it seemed everyone I know used one; even celebrity nurseries I saw in magazines had them. Plus, they are very common; every bedding kit comes with them, and the
bumper that matched Scarlett’s nursery d├ęcor made the room. It was gorgeous! The satin ribbons on it were my favorite.

Crib With Bumper

However, when Scarlett started scooting and moving around in her crib recently, I did become more and more concerned. Her bumper pad is especially large with a lot of padding, and it only has ties at the top. So I decided to take it off for awhile until she gets older. Her room is barer now, but seriously, does that even compare to the risk? I also feel bad because it was very expensive, and my mother-in-law bought it. I'm sure she understands though!!

Crib Without

Still thinking about the bumper controversy, I did some research about infant deaths caused by bumper pads, and was very troubled by what I found. One particular article, “Deaths and Injuries Attributed to Infant Crib Bumper Pads” discusses an in depth study done on the issue. According to this article, over a period of about four years, 27 bumper related deaths were reported on death certificates. The article also gives pictures to reenact how some of the deaths occurred which are really hard to look at. The ages of babies that died due to the bumpers ranged from 6 days old to 14 months old. Most suffocated in some manner, and one strangled by the bumper pad ties.

The article mentions that bumpers are intended to prevent injury, and lists injuries caused by cribs with no bumpers. However, no deaths were reported in these cases, only minor injuries, such as sprained limbs or minor bruising. The CPSC also lists more precautions about bumpers and actually reported more deaths caused by bumper pads. They do mention what type and size of bumper to use if you absolutely must.

I became very upset after reading the article and other info online that I felt the need to post this. It clearly seems the dangers of bumper pads outweigh the benefits. Just something to get everyone thinking…..

Aug 9, 2008

4 Months Old

My little girl is 4 months old today. I honestly cannot believe it either. 4 months of being pregnant felt like a lifetime (lets just say it's best I didn't blog while pregnant as it would have only been rant after whine after complaint...needless to say I was not a happy camper those 9 months) but four months with her have passed too quickly. She is changing daily, hourly even it seems.

I was a little stunned to check on her the other night in her crib to find that she had turned completely around somehow, and her head was at the opposite end of where it was when I had put her down! She is more vocal now which is great when she's laughing and babbling with joy and a little nerve rattling when she's screaming and mad. She's not a fussy baby, but the girl knows how to throw a royal fit every now and then!

THANKFULLY, she sleeps for about 8 hours at a time now, from 8 pm to 4:30sih. Then she eats and goes back to sleep until about 8 am. I'm finally feeling less sleep deprived!!

She loves grabbing her feet when she's on her back. She hasn't rolled over yet, but we're practicing! I'm fearful (mainly because I'm breastfeeding) that she's teething. She slobbers a lot and loves to bite cold teething rings and cool, damp wash cloths. So we're expecting teeth very soon.

Life is great, and I read something the other day that is very true. By this stage, us mothers finally have our "Gerber" babies we've always imagined: fat and smiley and completely scrumptious. I love her more than I can express. She is my sunshine, my joy, my life. I love you, my sweet sweet Scarlett.

I forgot to snap a picture during the day today. So here she is after being put down for the night. Happy 4 months Scarlett!