Doctors have found that placing babies on their backs to sleep helps prevent SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). However, babies who lie in one position too long may develop an abnormal head shape called plagiocephaly (pley-jee-uh-sef-uh-lee), or positional molding.

What is Plagiocephaly?

Plagiocephaly means slanted or flattening of the head. An infant’s skull is very soft to allow the brain to grow during the first year of life. If the head stays in the same position, a flat spot may develop because of the baby’s soft skull. Plagiocephaly is when the side or back of the head becomes flattened, often due to lying in one position too long.