Protecting Baby’s Head Shape: A Mom’s Guide to Plagiocephaly

Head shape

As a new mom, you want to make sure you’re doing everything you can to protect your baby’s health and well-being. One important aspect of caring for your baby is protecting their head shape. Plagiocephaly, also known as flat head syndrome, is a common condition that can develop in babies, but there are steps you can take to prevent it and promote healthy head shape development.

What is Plagiocephaly?

Plagiocephaly is a condition characterized by a flat spot on the back or side of a baby’s head. It can develop if a baby spends too much time in one position, such as lying on their back, which is recommended to prevent SIDS. This can cause the baby’s skull to flatten in that area, resulting in an asymmetrical head shape.

Preventing Plagiocephaly

There are several things you can do to help prevent plagiocephaly and promote healthy head shape development in your baby:

  • Practice tummy time: Encourage your baby to spend supervised time on their tummy while they are awake. This can help strengthen their neck muscles and prevent flattening of the skull.

  • Change positions: Alternate the side of the head your baby rests on while they are sleeping. This can help distribute the pressure on their skull more evenly.

  • Hold your baby: Carrying your baby in your arms or using a baby carrier can help reduce the amount of time they spend lying on their back.

  • Use a specialized mattress or pillow: There are products available that are designed to help prevent plagiocephaly by providing support for your baby’s head and promoting proper head shape development.

Treating Plagiocephaly

If you notice signs of plagiocephaly in your baby, such as a flat spot on their head or asymmetrical facial features, it’s important to consult with their pediatrician. In some cases, repositioning techniques and physical therapy exercises may be recommended to help correct the issue. In more severe cases, a helmet or headband may be prescribed to help reshape the baby’s head.


Protecting your baby’s head shape is an important part of their overall health and development. By taking proactive steps to prevent plagiocephaly and seeking treatment if necessary, you can help ensure that your baby’s head grows and develops properly. Remember to consult with your pediatrician if you have any concerns about your baby’s head shape or development.


How can I encourage tummy time with my baby?

You can start by incorporating short periods of tummy time into your baby’s daily routine, gradually increasing the duration as they become more comfortable. You can also use toys and engaging activities to keep them entertained while they are on their tummy.

When should I be concerned about my baby’s head shape?

If you notice a persistent flat spot on your baby’s head or asymmetrical facial features, it’s a good idea to consult with their pediatrician. They can assess the situation and provide guidance on the best course of action.