Head deformities or plagiocephaly (from the Greek plagio oblique and kephale head) are quite common among babies. Additionally, infants who tend to have a preferred head position while sleeping (to the left or the right) may acquire a certain head asymmetry that is called Positional Plagiocephaly.

Management of positional plagiocephaly

The majority of children usually do not need any intervention. The head shape will naturally improve after the child adopts a more upright position after 6 months of age and positional plagiocephaly does not result in any development delay.

What can I do as a parent to correct Plagiocephaly?

  • Allow your baby to lie prone while being awake and under surveillance (tummy time) at least 1 hour per day (30 min in the morning and 30 min in the afternoon)
  • While sleeping in prone position, change the side of your baby’s head to both sides alternatively.
  • Change your baby’s cot position from time to time. It’s known that babies tend to turn their heads towards the side of noises or other stimulus.
  • Supervise and support the sitting or lying on the side when your baby is awake while putting a cushion behind his/her back.

However we always advise that whenever a child has a head deformity, parents should always seek their pediatrician for advice as there are other causes that are more serious and require early intervention like congenital torticolitis (the baby can't rotate the head to one of the sides) or premature closure of cranial bones sutures that needs urgent surgical approach.

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