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When Is It Necessary to Seek Medical Care for the Newborn’s Head Shape?

Posted on Dec 7, 2022

Medically Reviewed by:  Tatiana Sikorskyj, APN, RNFA
Pediatric Advanced Nurse Practitioner
Reviewed on: October 26, 2023

A newborn’s head is very soft and malleable, so it is not uncommon for the head to be misshapen. Typically, the head will round out on its own within the first few months. However, in some cases, the misshapen head may be a sign of a more serious condition, such as Flat Head Syndrome (FHS). FHS is characterized by an asymmetry of the head and can often be accompanied by plagiocephaly, which is a flattening of one side of the head.

If you are concerned that your newborn may have FHS, it is important to seek medical care. Your doctor will be able to assess your child and determine if further treatment is necessary. In some cases, a carnial helmet may be prescribed in order to correct the head shape. Let’s see What causes flat head syndrome? How Does a baby’s flat head correct itself? and How to fix a baby’s flat head without a helmet?

Medical Care for the baby Head Shape


What Causes Flat Head Syndrome?

There are a number of factors that can contribute to FHS, including:

Positional Molding: This occurs when your baby spends extended periods of time in one position, such as when sleeping on their back. As the name suggests, this can cause the head to take on a certain shape.

Torticollis: Torticollis in babies is a condition where the neck muscles are tight, causing the head to tilt to one side. Babies with torticollis may also have difficulty moving their heads from side to side.

Prematurity: Premature babies are more likely to develop FHS because their skulls are softer than those of full-term babies. In addition, they often spend extended periods of time in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), where they may be positioned in one spot for long periods of time.

Does a Baby’s Flat Head Correct Itself?

In most cases, yes. As your baby grows and starts to spend more time upright or on their stomachs, the head will round out on its own. However, there are some cases where intervention may be necessary. This is typically determined by your child’s age, the severity of flatness, and whether or not there are any associated conditions present.

How to Fix a Baby’s Flat Head Without a Helmet?

There are a number of ways you can help prevent or treat FHS without resorting to a helmet, including: 

Tummy Time: Spend some time each day letting your baby lie on their stomach while supervised. This will help strengthen their neck muscles and prevent positional molding.

Move Their Head During Feedings: When you’re feeding your baby, make sure to frequently move their head from side to side so that they don’t get used to always looking in one direction.

Position Them Upright: Whenever possible, position your baby upright rather than lying down flat. For example, you could hold them upright during feedings or put them in an infant seat that props them up slightly.

Note: Do not put pillows under your baby’s head, as this can increase the risk of suffocation.

Infant Flat Head Treatment Experts at New Jersey, Morristown.

The team at NJ Craniofacial Center are healthcare professionals with specialized knowledge and experience in treating plagiocephaly, or baby flat head syndrome. Our specialists can help parents of children suffering from plagiocephaly understand their condition and develop the best possible treatment plan for their baby’s individual needs. Call us now without any delay.


A newborn’s head is very soft and malleable, so it is not uncommon for their heads to be misshapen. In most cases, the misshapen head will round out on its own within the first few months without intervention. However, in some cases, such as Flat Head Syndrome (FHS), further treatment may be necessary. Early intervention is key, so it is important to seek medical advice as soon as possible if infant flat head syndrome is suspected.


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