Worried about and obsessing over flat head syndrome(12 Posts)
I am worried that my DS is developing a flat patch on his head. I'm constantly taking photos if his profile and comparing them, and feeling his head where I think it's going flat. Everyone else says it's not but I'm SURE it's the beginnings of a flat patch.
At what point do flat patches tend to appear? DS is nearly 10 weeks and I'm considering getting him a special pillow for use during the day because he loves his playmat and I can't hold him up all the time.
Any advice greatly received. Thanks
I think my son's flat area was at it's worst at about ten weeks and is almost gone now he's 5 months, if that helps reassure you at all.
Thanks. That is reassuring. I shall google doomoo
My ds was as flat as a pancake at 10 weeks, and he got even flatter!
He was a huge baby and when he was born he stretched out flat on his back in relief and never slept in any other position. His head was flattish when he was born. Couldn't swaddle him, or prop him on his side, he just wanted to be flat stretched and with arms up next to his head.
I couldn't complain as he was brilliant sleeper and self settled etc. But he did get very very flat head
I never took a photo and I wish I had as no-one believes me how chopped off he looked, from the side his head finished at the ears, the back was so flat.
The flatter it got, the less likely he was to turn his head to the side a bit for sleep, so it got flatter. He was very happy on his play mat and so that was more lying on his head. he did spend time in a bouncy chair too, which relieved it a bit.
Then he learned to roll, and slowly started to sleep in different positions, on his side and with his head turned etc. Within a few weeks it started to round out. After a couple of months you couldn't tell there had been an issue.
He does still (aged 10) have a flatter back to the head than his sister, but her head was completely round at birth, so much so that she automatically rolled onto her side a bit. He looks totally normal now and not flat headed at all and you can't tell there was ever a problem
I remember that feeling of witnessing ds's head getting flatter... In my ds's case it was made worse by his head being often tilted to the side, so the flat patch developed very asymmetrically. In our case, I have given up 'observations' about your stage (10 weeks or so) and decided it was time to act. Internet has plenty of info on this condition - it is called plageocephaly, and on advice of a specialised support website I got a pillow Lilla Kuddis baby pillow (http://lillakuddisbabypillows.co.uk/). I know it is not normally recommended by NHS to use pillows during baby's sleep, but in most other countries it is considered normal, so for us I've decided that benefits outweighed the risks. The flatness has definitely got better after we started to use the pillow. Never went away completely and now at 7yo I know that it is still there, but I suppose noone else notices, so it's ok Oh, and it emerged a little bit later that DS also had a pulled neck muscle from birth and that made him favour tilting his head to a particular side. Got it sorted through chiropractor...
I couldn't get any of the shaped pillows etc because we were living over seas at the time.
I was recommended putting a rolled up towel under his back to prop him on his side a bit and then they other side etc.
ds wasn't having any of it, he wouldn't settle until he had wriggled off the towel and was flat, arms over head.
I have to say ds flatness did go once he was more mobile, but as his was symetrical, it is hard to say what shape his head would have been if he had slept on (eg) his front as a baby
I understand. I was very worried about my boy before he was even born. Was convinced that his head would be flat. As a result he spent a LOT of time on his tummy during the day and in a front pack with me. Less walking in the buggy and more walking with Mummy!
I also slept him on his side, in a safety sleep, safety pinned in, taking turns to turn him each sleep.
He has a beautiful head.
And good upper body strength!
My DD had this and ended up needing a helmet to correct the flatness at the back and to one side (it worked too ). She had an undiagnosed problem with her neck and, due to a congenital condition, was much more sleepy and passive than other babies, all of which contributed to the problem. We were relatively late picking up the problem (due to everything else we were dealing with for her) so she was 5/6 months before we started to act.
But, in your case your DS is so young still, I think you should be able to tackle this before it gets any worse. Have a look at the advice here
We also sought advice and had a few treatments with a paediatric cranio-osteopath.
X-post with Athrawes and everything she says was part of the advice we were given for DD
Yes, everyone worries about flat head syndrome, in our case it was worse around 4 months, I bought a standard baby pillow, not the donut shaped, and used it under the sheet, as I figured out that the mattress is not soft enough for gentle babe head. Also moving her head to the side once she was asleep helped. The flat patch was gone within a month.
We used this:
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