Ear molds are an effective way of treating infants with minor ear deformities. Deformities range from different conditions, but essentially involve misshaped ears that vary in skin or cartilage deficiency. Unfortunately, infant ear molding is not possible for cases of microtia or severely constricted ears. The earlier the ear mold is applied, the better the results will be. Our surgeons recommend this treatment in the first week after birth and up to four weeks of age, as long as the cartilage has not become firm.
About Infant Ear Molding
Infant ear molding molds consist of the same material used in dental impressions. This is because this material is firm enough to reshape cartilage, but is still gentle on the skin. Our surgeons use splints to hold the molds in place, and these are secured by adhesive tape. The molding process takes up to three to four visits and replaced every two to three weeks. Staff members at My Houston Surgeons photograph each patient, using before and after imaging to show gradual change in ear development as they continue the reshaping process. The infant patient is required to wear the molds for 24 hours a day. Due to normal wear, their molds and adhesives will need to be reinforced and reapplied as needed.
Recovery & Success Rate
Infant ear molding has a high success rate. The treatment improves appearance, and in most cases, no future surgery is required. In the very few cases where the infant requires additional surgery, their deformity will be lessened by the ear mold, helping improve the infant’s need for extensive ear reconstructive surgery later on. Because ear molding is a non-invasive procedure, no recovery time is necessary. The only aftercare involves the infant’s caregivers reapplying the adhesives when necessary, to ensure the molds reshape the baby’s ears as they are supposed to.
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