Having a dent in skull definitely isn’t normal. It can be caused by things ranging from vitamin A toxicity to Gorham’s disease. Let’s learn more.
One possible cause is Gorham’s disease. This is a disorder that causes one (or several) bones to turn into vascular tissue.
The end result is a misshapen skull. However, keep in mind that this is rare. It’s often referred to as the “Vanishing Bone Disease” or “Disappearing Bone Disease”.
As the bone disappears, it’s slowly replaced with lymphatic vessels. So the area where the bone used to be starts to become soft and misshapen.
Who Does Gorham’s Disease Affect?
Gorham’s disease (GSD) doesn’t just affect the head. It can also affect the spine, pelvis, collarbone, and ribs. Sometimes the jaw can also be affected.
Pain and swelling may develop in those areas as well. The severity of this disease will vary from person to person. And unfortunately, the exact cause is unknown.
The good news is that this is a relatively rare disease, so the chances are small that this is what’s causing your head indentation.
Vitamin A Toxicity: A Common Cause For Dents in Children
The official term for vitamin A toxicity is “Hypervitaminosis A”. This can cause bones to swell, leading to pain.
It can also cause skull bones to soften, leading to a dent. As its name implies, vitamin A toxicity happens when you consume too much vitamin A.
How much does a child need? According to the National Institutes of Health, here’s what they need based on their age (daily allowance):
- 0-6 Months: 400 mcg
- 7-12 Months: 500 mcg
- 1-3 Years: 300 mcg
- 4-8 Years: 400 mcg
- 9-13 Years: 600 mcg
- 14+ Years: 700-900 mcg
If your child isn’t getting the right amount of vitamin A, then this can cause the bones in their head to become softened, leading to an indentation.
Use this chart as a reference for how much vitamin A they should be getting on a daily basis.
Symptoms of Vitamin A Toxicity
Besides causing a head indentation, let’s take a look at some of the other symptoms of vitamin A toxicity:
- Abdominal Pain
- Increased Pressure on Brain
If your child is experiencing any of these additional symptoms, then you should definitely have them cut back on the amount of Vitamin A that they’re consuming.
This could very well be the reason why there is an indentation on their head.
Trauma to the Head
A dent in skull can be caused by trauma. For instance, if you’re struck by an object it can cause the skull’s bones to crack, resulting in an inward dent.
In the medical community, this is referred to as a “Depressed Skull Fracture”. Most people would know if they’ve had any trauma to the head though, so if you haven’t, then you can rule this out as a possibility.
Prolonged Pressure on Skull and Head Indentations
Another possibility is that you’ve experience a prolonged pressure on your skull.
Again, this is something that you would easily notice (unless it’s happening when you’re sleeping).
Be on the lookout for anything external that’s putting chronic pressure on your head.
Yet another possible cause for your head indentation is meningitis. This is when the sac that lines your brain becomes inflamed.
However, it’s usually associated with other symptoms like pain, so you would most likely know if you have this based on other causes.
In some cases, an infection can lead to the erosion of the bones in the skull. If you have an infection, you’ll need to get on antibiotics to prevent the further development of the symptoms.
Only your doctor will be able to tell you for sure whether you have an infection that’s causing your dent in skull.
In summary, some of the things that might cause a dent in skull include vitamin A toxicity, Gorham’s disease, trauma, and prolonged pressure.
In some cases, a person might have this symptom for years before ever realizing it.
If it’s not causing you any pain, and you don’t have any other symptoms, then it’s probably nothing serious. Consult your doctor if you’re worried.