A MOTHER is raising awareness of her seven-month-old son’s condition by scaling the highest peak in England.
Andrea Blackwell will climb Scafell Pike in the Lake District on September 3 to raise money for Headstart4Babies, a charity that supports babies with plagiocephaly and brachycephaly, which is commonly known as “flat head” syndrome.
Her son, Edwin was born with plagiocephaly, which meant his head grew into a deformed shape because of his position in the womb.
Despite one in 30 babies suffering from the condition, the NHS does not offer treatment for it.
Edwin now has a custom-made helmet which he has to wear 23 hours a day in order to shape his head into a rounded shape.
If diagnosed early, the treatment can be given to babies aged four months to 14 months but costs about £2,000 per helmet.
Andrea, 35, of Chatsworth Road, Stamford, said: “Edwin’s case is so severe that he might have to have two helmets before the shape of his head stops changing at about 14 months old.
“Within days of him having it fitted at the end of May we could already see a difference.
“We could afford to pay for the first helmet, but might need help with the second one, which is why we are raising money for Headstart4Babies.”
She said the helmets had proved very successful in helping babies like Edwin.
“It was scary because it is something that is diagnosed as a condition but to be told that nothing will be done is awful,” she said.
“He took to it really well though and we know it isn’t hurting him.
“We have heard of so many success stories. Only last week I was at the airport and a man came up to me and told me that his son had had the treatment and is fine now.”
Andrea, who formerly worked in property sales, and husband Darren, 38, a band tour manager, both grew up in Rutland and went to Vale of Catmose College in Oakham. They lived in London for 15 years but moved back to the area in November to be closer to their families.
Edwin’s godmother Emma Fitch is holding a Jamie at Home party at her home in West Road, Oakham, on Saturday, August 13. Proceeds from the party will also go to Headstart4babies.
Andrea said: “We want to raise about £2,000 but if we raise more then extra money will go to the charity to help families with babies with the condition.
“A lot of the time people are told that the condition will correct itself, but that isn’t always the case and there is treatment available.
“We want to make more people aware of this.”
The Jamie at Home party will be held at 7 West Road from 11am to 3pm.
Andrea will be climbing Scafell Pike with a group of friends who will also be raising money for the cause. if you would like to sponsor her go to visit www.justgiving.com/edwinblackwell