Preventing and Treating Positional Plagiocephaly: Mom’s Ultimate Guide


As a parent, it’s natural to want the best for your baby. One common concern among parents is positional plagiocephaly, also known as flat head syndrome. This condition occurs when a baby’s head develops a flat spot due to prolonged pressure on one area of the skull.

While positional plagiocephaly is common and usually not a cause for concern, it’s important to be proactive in preventing and treating it. Here’s your ultimate guide to understanding and addressing positional plagiocephaly.

Prevention Tips

Preventing positional plagiocephaly begins with promoting healthy and varied head movements for your baby. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. Encourage tummy time: Tummy time not only strengthens your baby’s neck and shoulder muscles but also reduces the risk of flat head syndrome. Aim for at least 30 minutes of supervised tummy time each day.

  2. Limit time in baby gear: While convenient, excessive time in swings, car seats, and other baby gear can contribute to flat head syndrome. Balance their use with plenty of time for free movement.

  3. Change positions: Alternating the direction your baby faces in the crib or changing the side you hold them on during feedings can help prevent constant pressure on one area of the skull.

Treatment Options

If you notice signs of positional plagiocephaly in your baby, don’t worry! There are several effective treatment options available:

  1. Repositioning techniques: Simple changes in how you position your baby during sleep and playtime can help alleviate pressure on the affected area.

  2. Physical therapy: In some cases, a pediatric physical therapist can provide exercises and stretches to improve your baby’s neck muscle strength and range of motion.

  3. Helmet therapy: For more severe cases, a custom-fitted helmet can be prescribed to help reshape the baby’s head by applying gentle, constant pressure to the flat spots.


Remember, positional plagiocephaly is usually a temporary and treatable condition. By following the prevention tips and seeking treatment if necessary, you can help your baby develop a healthy, round head shape.


1. Is positional plagiocephaly preventable?

While it may not be entirely preventable, promoting healthy head movements and changing your baby’s position regularly can significantly reduce the risk of flat head syndrome.

2. When should I seek treatment for positional plagiocephaly?

If you notice persistent flat spots or asymmetry in your baby’s head shape, it’s best to consult with a pediatrician. They can assess the severity of the condition and recommend appropriate treatment options.

3. How long does it take to see improvement with repositioning and treatment?

The timeline for improvement varies depending on the severity of the plagiocephaly. Repositioning can show results within weeks, while helmet therapy may take several months to reshape the baby’s head.