Plagiocephaly (Flat Head) Syndrome

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Plagiocephaly, (pronounced play-gi-o-cef-a-ly,) or flat head syndrome is a condition caused by prolonged time spent on one side of the baby's head, usually during the first 6 to 9 weeks.

  • Newborns have soft skill bones. As a result, if a newborn spends too much time on flat surfaces, the soft bones can change shape and develop a flat spot on the back or side of the head.
  • Flat Head is most common among male infants, firstborns, and in cases of multiple or premature births.
  • Afflictions such as torticollis (tightening of the neck muscles) and macrocephaly (abnormalities in which the head circumference is greater than normal) can also increase risk.
  • The most common treatment for the more serious cases is moulded helmet therapy.

If you have any specific concerns you should contact your doctor.

Prevention is key!
You should keep an eye on your baby’s head circumference, frequently alternate his or her sleeping position and the position of any hanging mobiles, regularly alternate feeding positions and encourage supervised side and tummy time. It is also wise to consider the use of a mattress, that helps assist in preventing and treating flat head.

LifeNest™, was developed by a paediatrician, Dr Jose Benosoussn, after witnessing a friend’s agony over losing a daughter to SIDS. 

A hammock style mattress, LifeNest sleep system distributes pressure evenly, helping prevent and treat flat head. It’s unique woven cradle contouring to the shape of the baby’s head. Unlike traditional mattresses, allowing a more even distribution of pressure, re-distributing it away from soft spots, helping to avoid the pressure build-up that can cause flat head syndrome.
The soft and comfortable netting also allows for free airflow. This reduces sweating and overheating. It also means, should the baby accidentally roll onto their stomach, they can breathe through the netting, thus reducing the risk of SIDS.

Suitable for all ages, Lifenest™ is available in both bassinet and cot sizes. The bassinet fits babies up to approximately 5 months of age. The cot mattress fits babies until they transition out of their crib, with an insert that can be popped in under the hammock, to make a traditional mattress once the baby it either 12 months old or 13kg and no longer needs flat head preventative measures.

For more information on Lifenest™ visit www.lifenest.com.au.   

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Disclaimer: This publication by Miracle Babies Foundation is intended solely for general education and assistance and it is it is not medical advice or a healthcare recommendation. It should not be used for the purpose of medical diagnosis or treatment for any individual condition. This publication has been developed by our Parent Advisory Team (all who are parents of premature and sick babies) and has been reviewed and approved by a Clinical Advisory Team. This publication is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Miracle Babies Foundation recommends that professional medical advice and services be sought out from a qualified healthcare provider familiar with your personal circumstances.To the extent permitted by law, Miracle Babies Foundation excludes and disclaims any liability of any kind (directly or indirectly arising) to any reader of this publication who acts or does not act in reliance wholly or partly on the content of this general publication. If you would like to provide any feedback on the information please email [email protected].