The Facts About Plagiocephaly: A Parent’s Guide to Treatment and Prevention


The Facts About Plagiocephaly: A Parent’s Guide to Treatment and Prevention

Welcome, parents! If you’ve heard the term “plagiocephaly” and are feeling a bit overwhelmed, you’re not alone. Plagiocephaly, also known as flat head syndrome, is a condition that affects many babies, but the good news is that there are treatment and prevention methods available. In this article, we’ll break down all the facts about plagiocephaly and provide guidance on how to address and prevent it in your little one.

What is Plagiocephaly?

Plagiocephaly is a condition characterized by the flattening of one side of a baby’s head. This can occur due to factors such as spending excessive time lying on their back, favoring one side of the head while sleeping, or being born with a tight neck muscle. It’s important to note that plagiocephaly is a common issue and is not typically associated with any developmental delays or underlying health concerns.

Treatment Options

If you notice your baby developing plagiocephaly, there are treatment options available to help address the issue. One common approach is repositioning techniques, which involve encouraging your baby to spend time on the non-flattened side of their head during supervised play and tummy time. In more severe cases, a healthcare provider may recommend a helmet or band to help shape the baby’s head as they continue to grow.

Prevention Methods

While it’s not possible to completely prevent plagiocephaly, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk. These include practicing tummy time with your baby while they are awake and supervised, minimizing the amount of time your baby spends in car seats and other restrictive devices, and encouraging them to change positions during sleep. Additionally, alternating the side of the head your baby lays on during naps and bedtime can help distribute pressure more evenly.


Plagiocephaly, or flat head syndrome, is a common condition that can be treated and prevented with the right strategies. By practicing tummy time, repositioning techniques, and making mindful choices about your baby’s positioning during sleep and awake time, you can help reduce the likelihood of plagiocephaly developing. If you have concerns about your baby’s head shape, be sure to consult with a healthcare provider for personalized guidance and support.


Q: Is plagiocephaly a serious condition?

A: Plagiocephaly is typically not associated with any developmental delays or health issues. However, addressing it early can help prevent more severe head shape changes.

Q: How long should my baby have tummy time each day?

A: Aim for a few short sessions of tummy time throughout the day, gradually building up to a total of 60 minutes by the time your baby is 3 months old.

Q: Will my baby need a helmet for plagiocephaly?

A: Not all babies with plagiocephaly require a helmet. Your healthcare provider can assess the severity of the flattening and recommend the best course of action.