Protecting Your Baby from Positional Plagiocephaly

As a parent, you want to do everything you can to keep your baby healthy and happy. One concern that many parents have is positional plagiocephaly, also known as flat head syndrome. This condition occurs when a baby’s head develops a flat spot due to pressure on the same area for extended periods of time.

While some cases of positional plagiocephaly may require medical intervention, there are steps you can take to protect your baby and reduce the risk of developing this condition. Here are some tips to help prevent positional plagiocephaly:

Encourage Tummy Time

Spending time on their tummy helps babies develop strong neck and shoulder muscles, and it also helps prevent flat spots from forming on the back of their head. Encourage tummy time during supervised play and interactions throughout the day.

Change Positioning

Changing your baby’s position during sleep and playtime can help reduce the risk of flat head syndrome. Alternating the direction your baby faces in the crib and using different positions for feeding and carrying can prevent prolonged pressure on one area of the head.

Limit Time in Baby Gear

While baby gear such as car seats, strollers, and swings are convenient, they can also contribute to the development of flat spots on a baby’s head. Limit the time your baby spends in these devices and provide plenty of supervised, hands-on playtime instead.

Use a Supportive Mattress

Choose a crib mattress that provides firm support for your baby’s head and body. This can help reduce the risk of developing flat head syndrome while ensuring a safe and comfortable sleep environment.

Consult with Your Pediatrician

If you have concerns about your baby’s head shape or the development of positional plagiocephaly, don’t hesitate to talk to your pediatrician. They can offer guidance and recommendations based on your baby’s individual needs.


By taking proactive steps to protect your baby from positional plagiocephaly, you can help promote healthy head shape development and reduce the risk of flat head syndrome. Remember to prioritize tummy time, change your baby’s positioning, limit time in baby gear, use a supportive mattress, and consult with your pediatrician as needed.


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

A: Aim for at least 30-60 minutes of supervised tummy time spread throughout the day, starting from the first weeks of life.

Q: Can I use a special pillow to prevent flat head syndrome?

A: It’s best to avoid using special pillows or devices that claim to prevent flat head syndrome, as they can pose a suffocation risk. Focus on repositioning and supervised tummy time instead.

Q: Will my baby outgrow flat head syndrome on their own?

A: In many cases, positional plagiocephaly will improve on its own as your baby becomes more mobile and spends less time lying down. However, it’s important to take preventive measures to support healthy head shape development.