Understanding and Preventing Positional Plagiocephaly in Babies

Welcome, caring moms! Today, let’s talk about an important topic that many parents may not be familiar with – positional plagiocephaly in babies. You may have heard of this condition referred to as “flat head syndrome.” It’s essential to understand what causes it and how you can prevent it to ensure your little one’s healthy development.

What is Positional Plagiocephaly?

Positional plagiocephaly is a condition where a baby’s head becomes flattened or misshapen due to external pressure on the skull. This can occur when a baby spends prolonged periods of time in the same position, such as lying on their back in a crib or car seat.

Causes of Positional Plagiocephaly

The primary cause of positional plagiocephaly is the pressure on the baby’s skull from external surfaces. This pressure can result from habits like always having the baby lie on the same side of their head or spending excessive time in devices that restrict movement, like car seats or swings.

Preventing Positional Plagiocephaly

Here are some simple ways you can help prevent positional plagiocephaly in your little one:

  • Give your baby plenty of supervised tummy time to strengthen their neck and shoulder muscles.

  • Make sure to alternate the baby’s head position while they sleep to avoid constant pressure on one side.

  • Avoid keeping the baby in one position for extended periods – change their position frequently throughout the day.

  • Limit the time your baby spends in car seats, swings, and other restrictive devices – opt for holding, babywearing, or playing on a flat surface instead.

Treatment for Positional Plagiocephaly

If you notice signs of positional plagiocephaly in your baby, such as a visibly flat spot on their head or uneven facial features, consult with your pediatrician. They may recommend specific exercises, repositioning techniques, or using special helmets or headbands to correct the issue.


As parents, it’s essential to be mindful of how our babies’ positioning can affect their development. By incorporating simple preventive measures into your daily routine, you can reduce the risk of positional plagiocephaly and support your little one’s healthy growth.


1. Can positional plagiocephaly be reversed?

With early intervention and appropriate treatment, positional plagiocephaly can often be corrected. It’s essential to address the issue as soon as you notice it to prevent any long-term effects.

2. How long is it safe for babies to be in car seats or swings?

While car seats and swings are convenient for short periods, it’s best to limit the time babies spend in them to minimize the risk of developing positional plagiocephaly. Aim to provide plenty of opportunities for movement and exploration outside of these devices.