When should I be concerned about my baby’s head size?
Pediatricians usually measure head circumference only in children under the age of 2, since the head doesn’t grow much after the fontanelles (soft spots) close at around 18 months. Again, head size is mostly genetic — so if you or your partner has a small head, your child may have a petite one too, and vice versa.
Do babies with microcephaly live long?
There is no standard life expectancy for microcephalic babies because outcomes depend on so many factors, and the severity of the condition can range from mild to severe. Babies with mild microcephaly may still meet the same milestones like speaking, sitting and walking as a child without the disorder.
What causes babies to be born with small heads?
Microcephaly is a condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than expected. During pregnancy, a baby’s head grows because the baby’s brain grows. Microcephaly can occur because a baby’s brain has not developed properly during pregnancy or has stopped growing after birth, which results in a smaller head size.
Does microcephaly cause retardation?
Signs and symptoms of microcephaly may include a smaller than normal head circumference that usually remains smaller than normal as the child grows, dwarfism or short stature, delayed motor and speech functions, mental retardation, seizures, facial distortions, hyperactivity, balance and coordination problems, and …
Do babies with microcephaly smile?
Marques said that head control, the ability to lift and support the head without help, in babies with microcephaly was “quite rare.” Having a social smile and eye contact is less rare, he said, depending on the type of visual damage and on whether they receive enough visual stimulation to strengthen their ability to …
Should I worry if my baby has a small head?
When to see a doctor
Chances are your doctor will detect microcephaly at the baby’s birth or at a regular well-baby checkup. However, if you think your baby’s head is smaller than normal or isn’t growing as it should, talk to your doctor.
What does baby head size indicate?
Another measure of infant growth is head circumference, or the size of your baby’s head. It’s important because it can indicate how well their brain is growing. If your baby’s brain isn’t growing properly, they may have a condition known as microcephaly.
Can microcephaly correct itself?
There is no treatment for microcephaly that will return the baby’s head to a normal size or shape. Microcephaly is a lifelong condition that has no cure.
Why is microcephaly bad?
For example, some forms of microcephaly are linked with severe developmental delay or a high risk for seizures, while others are not. Some forms can impair motor function or affect other organs in the body. Microcephaly linked to prenatal infections such as Zika sometimes causes with vision and hearing problems.
How do you know if your baby has microcephaly?
To diagnose microcephaly after birth, your baby’s provider measures your baby’s head circumference during a physical exam. Head circumference is the distance around your baby’s head. Your baby’s provider then compares your baby’s measurement to that of other babies of the same sex and age.