A DEDICATED mother is well on her way to raising enough money to pay for treatment that could improve her son’s quality of life in years to come.
As reported in the Larne Times last month, four-month-old Oliver Smith suffers from a condition called torticollis, in which his neck muscles were tightened due to difficulties at birth.
This has resulted in an abnormal moulding of the infant’s skull known as plagiocephaly, which could lead to a number of problems in Oliver’s life further down the line.
Unfortunately, the treatment to correct Oliver’s condition is not available on the NHS, and his mum Lynsey Poole has launched a fundraising drive to gather the £1,950 required to pay for the procedure. The treatment would involve helmet therapy, where a specially moulded helmet is fitted onto the child’s head to allow for normal growth to resume as the pressure is taken away from the favoured side.
Former Larne woman Lynsey has already amassed about a third of the necessary funding – over £650 – and has also helped to raise awareness of her son’s condition.
After reading Oliver’s story in the Times, one Larne woman took it upon herself to contact the paper by letter with details of an alternative treatment for the child’s condition.
The former midwife said: “I was very sorry to hear about Oliver’s problems with his head. During my time as a midwife I came across a treatment called craniosacral therapy, and saw first-hand the relief it could achieve for babies who had a difficult passage into this world.
“The therapy is very gentle and can be done with the baby in your arms or even while feeding.
“I know there are people in the medical profession who do not believe is some alternative or complimentary therapies, but I have seen some amazing improvements in skull shape, feeding problems, colic and other areas.”
Attached to the letter was some further information regarding the craniosacral therapy, which the Times passed on to Lynsey, who currently lives in England.
The 26-year-old thanked the author of the letter and said she would investigate the treatment further. “It certainly sounds like an interesting alternative therapy and I will definitely look into it,” she added.
“I am not sure how readily available it would be or how well it would actually work. It may help Oliver’s torticollis, but I am not sure if it would help the plagiocephaly, which is why we are fundraising for a helmet.”
Meanwhile, Lynsey has taken up a baby massage course with Oliver and is delighted with the results.
“He is very happy and a lot calmer, and I would recommend this course to any mother,” she added. “It aids digestion, colic, sleep and is a perfect way to bond with your little one. Oliver has been having physiotherapy and his neck movement has drastically improved.
“We appreciate all the help and support given to us so far. Any amount given, no matter how small, will be hugely appreciated, ” she concluded.
To help Lynsey get a little closer to her fundraising target, make a donation at www.justgiving.com/Oliver-David-Smith