If you're a new parent and your baby's head seems flatter than usual, don't worry! It's actually a common condition known as "infant flat head syndrome." While it may sound alarming at first, infant flat head is often treatable and preventable. In this article, we'll dive into the causes of infant flat head and provide some tips for preventing it.
What Is Infant Flat Head Syndrome?
Also known as plagiocephaly (pronounced "play-jee-oh-seff-uh-lee"), infant flat head syndrome occurs when the back or side of an infant's skull becomes flattened. This can happen because infants spend so much time lying on their backs or with their heads turned to one side.
There are two types of plagiocephaly:
This type of flattening is caused by positional preference. When babies sleep in the same position repeatedly or rest against a surface such as car seats that changes the shape due to force over time they tend to cozily fit better hence spending prolonged periods static in those positions hence causing asymmetry.
Craniosynostosis is also called nonsyndromic cranial synostosis; results from cell growth abnormalities which cause premature fusion especially near sutures between bones which means less mobility thus less tendency towards deformation through activities like figuring how to rotate neck while sleeping or expressions while playing.
Why Do Babies Get Flat Heads?
Babies get flat heads mostly due to extensive exposure in steady positions prioritizing front spots which tend not consistently around middle figure points upon continual contact making them prominent pressing spots without easy shift spaces visible often resulting corresponding persistent conformation chipped away uneven curvature during early stage constant shaping. Other possible reasons include:
- Weak neck muscles
- Initial placement after delivery
- Premature birth
- Muscular torticollis
While usually harmless, infants are still at risk of developing infant flat head syndrome. It's important to take preventative measures if you notice your baby spending a lot of time in the same position or showing signs of muscular weakness.
How to Prevent Infant Flat Head Syndrome
There are many simple ways to reduce the likelihood of placiocephaly for new parents:
It might not sound like fun if it were up to babies since they'd much prefer napping but as painful as tummy time can be schedule wise, ensure your bundle gets enough similar duration laid on stomach maybe while playing with toys so instead practising strength building and mobility thereby combatting fluidity promoting permanent comfortablility even during sleep times.
To avoid lengthy hours spent stagnant on a single spot encourage regularly alteration between different directions so that repeated forced imprinting doesn't happen one side. Feel free to alternate crib direction or placement especially relaxing during periods where heads rise higher effortlessly making naps safer.
Bring Them Closer!
When holding, try keeping them snuggly closer against yourself there’s reduced possibility spending too long static quite comfortable however helpful pressure moderation considering variations ensures healthy skull development.
Babies generally love feeling secure thus seeking closeness hence tend emitting pleasant sounds indicating mood relief which translates into relaxed muscles this way prevents unnecesarily continued stiffness.
Adjust Sleeping Surfaces
Ensure surfaces they routinely rest upon when sleeping have consistent texture allowing smooth easy transitioning amidst sides thus minimizes active movement strengthening growing motor capabilities evident once able rotate freely unrestricted without support also consider foam artefacts capable swift stabilisation preventing shaky positioning lest detrimental
Infant flat head is a common condition among newborns and young infants. While frustrating for parents who want their child's head shape looking symmetrical initially it is treatable/preventable minor deformability displaying adaptable growth constrasting with older people who may have some cranial deformities. By using preventative measures and working with your child's pediatrician, you can help ensure that your baby grows up with a healthy skull shape!