Positional Plagiocephaly: How to Keep Your Baby’s Head Beautifully Round

Head shape

As a parent, you want your baby to be healthy and happy, and that includes making sure their head develops properly. Positional plagiocephaly, also known as flat head syndrome, occurs when a baby’s head develops a flat spot due to external pressures on their skull. It’s a common concern for parents, but the good news is that there are simple steps you can take to prevent and correct positional plagiocephaly.

Prevention Tips

One of the best ways to prevent positional plagiocephaly is to give your baby plenty of tummy time. This not only helps to strengthen their neck muscles, but it also gives their head a break from lying in the same position. You can start tummy time as soon as your baby comes home from the hospital, and gradually increase the amount of time as they grow.

Another helpful tip is to vary the position in which you hold your baby. Avoid always holding them in the same position, as this can put pressure on the same area of their head. Instead, try using a baby carrier or sling to hold them in different positions throughout the day.

It’s also important to make sure your baby has a safe sleep environment. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies sleep on their back to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), but you can still vary the position of their head by alternating which end of the crib they sleep at or by using a specially designed sleep positioner that encourages natural head movement.

Corrective Measures

If you notice that your baby’s head is developing a flat spot, there are corrective measures you can take to help round it out. One option is to reposition your baby’s head during sleep. You can try using a special pillow or repositioning devices to gently encourage your baby to turn their head in different directions while they sleep.

Physical therapy or osteopathic manipulation are other options for correcting positional plagiocephaly. A trained professional can work with your baby to encourage proper head and neck movement, and may also teach you exercises to do at home to help improve your baby’s head shape.

When to Seek Help

If you’re concerned about your baby’s head shape, it’s always a good idea to talk to your pediatrician. They can help determine if your baby has positional plagiocephaly and can recommend the best course of action for your specific situation. In some cases, a pediatrician may recommend a helmet or head positioning device to help correct the shape of your baby’s head.


Positional plagiocephaly is a common concern among parents, but by following these prevention tips and taking corrective measures when needed, you can help keep your baby’s head beautifully round. Remember, every baby is different, and it’s important to talk to your pediatrician if you have any concerns about your baby’s head shape.


Q: Will my baby’s head shape naturally improve over time?

A: In many cases, yes. As your baby grows and becomes more active, their head shape may naturally round out. However, if you have concerns, it’s best to talk to your pediatrician for personalized advice.

Q: Are there any long-term effects of positional plagiocephaly?

A: Most cases of positional plagiocephaly do not have long-term effects, especially when caught and addressed early. However, in rare cases, severe or untreated plagiocephaly can lead to developmental delays or issues with vision and hearing.