Does supine sleeping cause baby's flat head (plagiocephaly)?

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Many parents worry and wonder whether supine sleeping causes baby’s flat head.

Description: Description: Does supine sleeping cause baby’s flat head?

Does supine sleeping cause baby’s flat head?

Newborn babies have soft skull that bends easily. If they spend too much time lying supine with their heads at the same place, they will be more likely to flat the head part that contacts with cushion. This state is called plagiocephaly symptom.

Plagiocephaly almost occurs to ‘kings of sleep’ (babies sleeping throughout the night with the same posture), to babies having abnormally big heads, or to premature babies having weak muscles. Do not think that prostrate sleeping will helps babies avoid plagiocephaly since it increases the risk of sudden infant death syndrome for babies while they are sleeping.

Description: Description: Prostrate sleeping increases the risk of sudden infant death syndrome for babies.

Prostrate sleeping increases the risk of sudden infant death syndrome for babies.

After babies are born, change lying posture each time they sleep (babies’ skull is very soft in the first days, so plagiocephaly is easy to occur to newborn babies if they are laid at the same posture for many days.)

After the first weeks, babies can turn heads, so you should lay their heads towards a different corner of the cradle for each night. Babies tend to turn face towards door or place with toys on the cradle. Therefore, you should diversify the turning so as for babies not to turn to one way only and to limit the fact that one part of their heads always weigh down on the cushion.

Lying prostrate is a chance for babies not to flat their heads. Train them to lie prostrate a few times. Begin with 1 to 2 minutes of prostrate lying so that they will enjoy this posture.

Lying prostrate also encourages babies to develop neck muscles at the first stage of life. As a result, they can comfortably turn heads when lying, and this limit their heads from lying with one posture all the time.

Restrict their lying on baby stroller, cradle or other places that make them turn heads to one way.

Change postures of holding babies when giving them milk (especially when they are bottle-fed). Adjusting babies’ suck postures will help prevent pressure from always being on one part of their heads.

Note: if you see that their heads are seriously flat, take them to the doctor. In some cases, babies need doctor’s early intervention.

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