Embarking on the journey of parenting is magical and being a first-time parent is an exciting experience. At the same time, being a first-time parent can be stressful. Not having a clear understanding of the dos and don’ts when taking care of a newborn is one of the foremost problems first-timers face.
Among many things when taking care of a newborn, many parents are unaware that it is important to switch babies’ head positions in specified intervals. Laying the baby in the same position for a long time on the bed or cradle causes the babies’ head to flatten. This condition is known as ‘flat head syndrome’ or medically known as ‘positional plagiocephaly’. The babies’ head is so soft and delicate that the skull bones don’t fuse until they are 9-18 months old. Babies also have very weak neck muscles and usually turn their heads to one side when they are laid down on their back. Regularly putting the baby to sleep in the same position for a long time puts excess pressure on the head. This causes the babies’ heads to take a flat shape. Hence, changing the laying positions of the baby is crucial.
Flathead syndrome can be prevented in many ways. One is by changing the babies’ sleeping position (one day face their head left, the other right, and so on). Babies can also be made to turn their heads by placing something interesting to look at like a toy arch in the crib. Another way is to encourage tummy time. Tummy time is the period when the baby spends awake on their stomach. It will also help in the baby’s motor, visual, and sensory development. In addition to this, holding the baby instead of placing those in the crib can also help in prevention.
Babies are at most risk of developing this condition in the first four months of being born. So, parents should tend to their little ones with a great deal of care during this time period. Be a loving, cautious, and responsible parent to your little one.