When parents are informed that their newborn requires a cranial orthosis, it often brings a flood of emotions. Understanding the emotional journey and equipping yourself with coping strategies is essential in navigating this period of having a newborn with a cranial orthosis.
Understanding Your Emotions
It’s natural to experience a wide range of emotions:
• Shock and Denial: Initial feelings may include shock or disbelief. Give yourself time to process the news.
• Guilt and Blame: Parents might erroneously blame themselves or feel guilty about their baby’s condition. It’s important to understand that these conditions are common and often out of your control.
• Anxiety and Concern: Worrying about the treatment process and your baby’s comfort is normal. Arm yourself with the knowledge to mitigate these fears.
Accepting the Situation
Acceptance is a crucial step in coping with your baby’s condition:
• Educate Yourself: Learn about the cranial orthosis, its purpose, and the treatment plan. Understanding the process can alleviate some fears and misconceptions.
• Speak to Professionals: Don’t hesitate to ask questions and express concerns to your healthcare provider. They can provide reassurance and valuable information.
• Building a Support System
A robust support system is invaluable:
• Family and Friends: Lean on close family and friends for emotional support and practical help.
• Community Groups: Connect with other parents who have gone through similar experiences. Sharing stories and tips can be incredibly comforting.
• Speak with your orthotist who can put you in touch with other parents who have had similar experiences.
Managing Day-to-Day Life
Developing a routine can bring a sense of normalcy and control:
• Create a Schedule: Establish a routine for the cranial orthosis wearing times, cleaning, and breaks. A predictable routine can reduce stress. Read the instructions provided by your orthotist.
• Celebrate Small Milestones: Acknowledge and celebrate the small steps of progress. Every day with the helmet is a step towards your goal.
Taking Care of Yourself
Your well-being is crucial in this journey:
• Self-care: It’s essential to look after your health and well-being. Ensure you’re getting enough rest, eating well, and finding time for relaxation.
• Seek Professional Help if Needed: If you’re struggling to cope, consider speaking to a counselor or therapist who can provide strategies and support.
Communicating with Others
Having a newborn with a cranial orthosis can sometimes draw attention or questions from others:
• Prepare Your Response: Prepare a simple explanation for curious onlookers or well-meaning inquiries.
• Educate Your Close Circle: Inform close friends and family about what cranial orthosis is for and how they can support you.
Embracing the Experience
While challenging, this journey can also bring growth and resilience:
• Positive Outlook: Focus on the positive outcomes of the treatment and your child’s resilience.
• Document the Journey: Keep a journal or photo diary of your baby’s progress. Reflecting on the journey can be a source of encouragement.
The emotional impact of having a newborn baby with cranial orthosis can be significant, but with understanding, support, and effective coping strategies, parents can navigate this challenging time more comfortably. Remember, you’re not alone in this journey; with each passing day, you provide your child with the best care possible. Reach out, stay informed, and take care of yourself as you take this path one step at a time. Your resilience and love are the best support your baby can have.
Your orthotist and his/her staff are professional, experienced, and caring individuals. Share your questions and concerns by contacting the staff as questions arise during treatment. Your orthotist is a partner in your journey and is committed to giving your family the best care possible.