Baby flat head syndrome is a popular topic that people often discuss. The head shape of a baby has a great influence on their appearance as well as health. There is an important period for baby to have a good head shape. Don’t miss this period. Otherwise, it’s easy for baby to get a flat head and difficult to correct it. In this article, we will talk about Flat Head Syndrome and share how to fix baby’s head shape.
Here are the contents of this article:
- 1. What Is Flat head syndrome?
- 2. Diagnostic criteria of baby flat head
- 3. How to treat flat head in babies?
- 4. Which is the best sleeping position?
What Is Flat Head Syndrome
The flat head syndrome refers to the flattening of the posterior or lateral position of the baby’s skull. We call it Plagiocephaly when it occurs in the lateral position of the skull. It’s Brachycephaly when it occurs in the posterior position of the skull.
Let’s have a look at some normal head shape pictures and flat head pictures.
Flat head syndrome has the following impact on babies:
- Influence the appearance of babies
- Unbalanced optic nerve development
- Uneven development of muscle tissue on both sides of the head
- Relatively slow mental development
- Affects the development of brain volume and dislocation of brain appendages
- Seriously, it can make brain volume insufficient, endanger intellectual development
When to worry about the baby flat head is a hot topic. In my opinion, it can not be ignored from the moment that the baby is born. The great period to fix the baby’s head shape is from the birth to 3 months old. The newborn spend most of their time sleeping in this period. The baby’s skull is very soft and it grows fast. While the newborn sleep in a flat crib, their head is easy to become flat. Therefore, we should pay attention all the time.
Diagnostic Criteria Of Baby Flat Head
Scientists have been studying flat head syndrome for a long time. They have established systematic observation and diagnosis methods.
Here are the diagnostic criteria of the baby flat head syndrome.
- Plagiocephaly and Brachycephaly less than 6mm don’t need to be treated. As the children grow up, they can change their sleeping posture to prevent it from getting worse. Also, the hair can cover the imperfect so as to make it imperceptible.
- An asymmetry of 6 to 12 mm is considered moderate oblate head syndrome which is recommended for treatment.
- If it’s over 18mm, we should pay more attention to the babies head.
I have found a useful article about the diagnostic method of the flat head syndrome.
How To Treat Flat Head In Babies
The key period of baby head shaping is 0-3 months. In this period, the baby’s neck is short and soft, the spine and skull have not developed well. There are growing gaps between the bone fragments. Until the baby is 15 months old, their head is easy to be shaped in various shapes. If we do not pay attention, it will lead to the baby’s head deformation. Therefore, mothers should notice the baby’s sleeping posture when they are nursing their baby. In this case, the baby will grow up with a beautiful head shape.
Here is what we should do.
- 1. The best way to fix the baby’s head shape is sleeping. The baby has a natural instinct to restore the head shape, as long as the parents change their baby’s sleeping positions regularly. Do not let the baby get used to a kind of sleeping position. If the bone bears the pressure for a long time, the shape of the skull must be affected. Mothers can change their babies’ sleeping posture every two to three hours.
- 2. If the mom and baby sleep in the same bed, the baby will roll over to its mother’s side unconsciously. The mother can change her sleeping position with her baby. In day one, you sleep on the baby’s left side. In day two, you can sleep on the baby’s right side. If the baby sleeps in a crib, you can change the baby’s sleeping direction every day.
- 3. When you are nursing or holding the baby, please pay attention to change the direction. If there is a slight plagiocephaly, the mother can play with the baby on the other side. For example, entertain your baby with a toy on the other side. Also, gently massage the other side of your baby’s neck can relax it.
- 4. It’s not conducive to have a perfect head shape if babies prefer to sleep on their left or right side. In this case, mothers should do something. They can fold a soft towel and put it under the left or right side of baby’s head. Buy a comfortable baby head shaping pillow on Amazon or eBay for a baby over 3 months old. ( By the way, here is an article about the baby pillow. You can learn how pillows help with baby flat head and which is the best pillow for baby. )
- 5. However, if the baby over 12 months old has a severe flat head syndrome, the mother should notice that. The flat head cannot go away itself, it’s better to go to the hospital for baby flat head treatment. Please know that the flat head syndrome can not correct itself.
Which Is The Best Sleeping Position?
As we all know, sleeping is the best method to have a good head shape. Some people think it’s better to sleep on the left or right side. But others think it’s better to sleep on their back or stomach. So let’s analyze which is the best for babies.
Sleep on the left or right side
This is a safe and healthy sleeping posture. It’s a little difficult for newborn baby to sleep on the one side. Because they don’t have the ability to roll over. Mother can put a soft pillow under the baby’s back which can help them to keep the posture. Please change the position on time to prevent plagiocephaly.
Sleep on the back
It can reduce the pressure on the baby’s internal organs, such as the heart, gastrointestinal tract, and bladder. Baby can relax their muscles. But don’t sleep on the back for a long time. Otherwise, the pressure on the back side of the head can lead to brachycephaly.
Sleep on the stomach
Don’t do this. It is irrational and dangerous. The risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is high when a baby sleeps on his or her stomach. Parents have to watch the babies to prevent the SIDS. It is not recommended to sleep on the stomach for a good head shape.
There is no best sleeping position. Change the position regularly is better for a newborn baby. Bear in mind that don’t sleep on the stomach.
In conclusion, the baby flat head syndrome has an influence on babies’ appearance and health. To prevent flat head syndrome, we should adjust the baby’s posture regularly, no matter the baby is asleep or awake.