My daughter has a hemangioma on her cheek and she is also 22 months old.
I am having a hard time deciding whether we should seek treatment as we are in Canada and they are all about the wait and see approach. Currently the plan is to wait until she is five years old, to see if it shrinks enough so that she can get away with just laser treatment to get rid of the veins. Her H. looks like a big bump on her cheek and is veiny.
I have been and am still asking the same questions as all of you and wrote to the developmental specialist on this site. She wrote back and her suggestions were very helpful. So I include her comments here:
"First of all let me tell you she is adorable.. She looks like a happy, healthy little girl,
Secondly, by repeating how beautiful and happy and healthy she is to her, is step number 1. By introducing her to everyone and not "protecting" her is the best steps you can be taking. You can eventually tell her she has a "special mark, or a boo-boo" or later use the work "hemangioma" to her is OK. You can explain to her it's only "temporary" ,,and her doctor is helping her with it, just like when she gets sick and you take her to get better,,(ie colds, flu ear-aches, etc)'; But all of these lessons are taught to her with the intention of making her a person first, and the hemangioma separate from her. She is not a hemangioma, she HAS ONE.
You can give her information to teachers, so they are aware of what is going on.. but I must reiterate, she needs to know every step of the way, it's OK, to have this, it doesn't hurt her, and it doesn't define, as she gets older and you explain more to her use examples, like people who wear glasses, and teens who have acne.. even a small scrape on her knee. these are meant to teach her.. things happen, things don't always look ideal, but w/e it is,,she is not the "identifying mark"
About further treatment, that is really, "your call"..What I always explain to my clients,,"Knowledge is Power"
Let me know, if there is anything else I can do for you,
Elissa Uretsky- Rifkin, M.Ed. CMHC
Clinical Mental Health Specialist
Vascular Birthmark Foundation
hope this helps.