Baby’s Head Shape Matters: How to Spot and Address Plagiocephaly

Head shape

Welcome, parents! As your little one grows and develops, it’s important to keep an eye on all aspects of their health and well-being. One often overlooked aspect is the shape of their head. In this article, we’ll discuss the condition known as plagiocephaly, how to spot it, and what steps you can take to address it.

What is Plagiocephaly?

Plagiocephaly, also known as flat head syndrome, is a condition where a baby’s head develops a flat spot due to prolonged pressure on one area of the skull. This can occur when a baby spends too much time lying in the same position, such as when they sleep or rest in a car seat or stroller.

While plagiocephaly is not typically a serious medical condition, it can lead to aesthetic concerns and, in some cases, affect the baby’s head and neck development if left untreated.

Spotting Plagiocephaly

As a parent, it’s important to regularly check your baby’s head for any signs of flat spots or asymmetry. Some common indications of plagiocephaly include:

  • Flat area on one side of the head

  • Asymmetrical appearance when viewed from the top

  • Ears misaligned, with one ear positioned more forward than the other

If you notice any of these signs, it’s essential to bring them to the attention of your pediatrician, who can provide a proper diagnosis and recommend a course of action.

Addressing Plagiocephaly

There are several steps you can take to address plagiocephaly and promote healthy head shape development in your baby. These may include:

  • Changing the baby’s head position regularly during sleep and playtime

  • Providing ample supervised tummy time to reduce pressure on the back of the head

  • Using specialized pillows or positioners designed to alleviate pressure on the flat spot

  • Physical therapy or exercises to improve neck muscle strength and mobility

  • In some cases, a helmet or headband may be recommended to help reshape the baby’s head

It’s important to discuss these options with your pediatrician to determine the best course of action for your baby’s specific needs.


As a parent, being vigilant about your baby’s head shape is crucial for their overall development and well-being. By knowing how to spot and address plagiocephaly, you can take proactive steps to ensure your little one’s head grows healthy and symmetrical.


Q: Can plagiocephaly be prevented?

A: While it’s not always possible to prevent plagiocephaly, implementing measures such as supervised tummy time and regular changes in head position can help reduce the risk.

Q: Will my baby need surgery for plagiocephaly?

A: In most cases, plagiocephaly can be addressed through non-invasive methods such as repositioning, physical therapy, or specialized pillows. Surgery is typically considered only in severe or rare cases.

Q: How long does it take to correct plagiocephaly?

A: The timeline for correcting plagiocephaly can vary depending on the severity of the condition and the chosen treatment method. Your pediatrician can provide a more personalized estimate based on your baby’s specific situation.