Baby’s Torticollis: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment


As a parent, it can be concerning to notice your baby exhibiting signs of discomfort or limited mobility. One condition that can affect infants is torticollis, a condition characterized by an abnormal positioning of the head and neck. In this article, we will explore the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for baby’s torticollis, providing you with the information you need to understand and address this condition.

Causes of Baby’s Torticollis

There are several factors that can contribute to the development of torticollis in infants. One common cause is a muscular issue, where the sternocleidomastoid muscle on one side of the neck becomes shortened or tightened, leading to an inability to fully turn the head. This can result from the baby’s position in the womb, trauma during childbirth, or persistent positioning of the head in one direction after birth.

Symptoms of Baby’s Torticollis

The most noticeable symptom of torticollis is an evident tilt or rotation of the head to one side. You may also observe that your baby has difficulty turning their head in the opposite direction or prefers to keep their head in a specific position. In some cases, torticollis can lead to other issues such as a flat spot on the baby’s head or delays in reaching developmental milestones that involve head and neck movement.

Treatment for Baby’s Torticollis

Early intervention is key when it comes to treating baby’s torticollis. One common approach is physical therapy, where a specialist will demonstrate gentle stretching exercises to perform with your baby to help lengthen and strengthen the affected neck muscle. Additionally, incorporating more tummy time into your baby’s daily routine can encourage them to move their head in different directions and prevent further tightening of the muscle. In some cases, your healthcare provider may recommend techniques such as craniosacral therapy or chiropractic adjustments to address any accompanying issues such as cranial misalignments.


It’s important to remember that baby’s torticollis is a treatable condition, especially with early intervention and consistent efforts to promote range of motion in the neck. By staying informed about the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for torticollis, you can work with your healthcare provider to develop a plan that supports your baby’s healthy development.


Q: Can I prevent my baby from developing torticollis?

A: While some cases of torticollis are unavoidable, you can encourage healthy neck movement by incorporating tummy time and varying your baby’s head positioning during sleep and play.

Q: How long does it take for baby’s torticollis to improve with treatment?

A: The timeline for improvement varies for each baby, but with consistent treatment and exercises, many infants show significant progress within a few months.