"Baby's flat head is a sign of my bad parenting"

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Merry - posted on 03/16/2012

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Carrying bigger babies in slings all day isn't always bad. IT promotes excellent muscle development in their core. And also promotes growth and emotional development.

I've never seen a single study finding anything negative about any amount of baby wearing!

If they're happy in the sling, I say it's good.

Mine was never placed on the floor til she was about 4 months, and then only rarely until about 6 months and yet she walked early at 9 months. She never spent tons of time in seats, she was carried a ton!

Yet once she was old enough, off she went!

Minnie - posted on 03/16/2012

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I guess it was the connotation of comparing a carried baby to spoiled child.



My first child was rarely carried, and she walked at 14 months. My second child was carried all the time and she walked, no scratch that, -ran- (climbed, bounced, scaled the wall, lol) at 10 months.



I think more it has to do with the individual child. In more traditional cultures babies are carried up right all day long and they don't seem to be having problems in gross motor development.

Minnie - posted on 03/16/2012

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Just stopping in to say that I carried my daughter all day long and set her down one day at five months and off she went. I guess being carried all the time didn't stop her body from knowing how to work, Mother Bacher.



She was also carried quite frequently after that and walked at ten months.

Bonnie - posted on 03/16/2012

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Some babies just like to sleep facing the same way all time. My second child had a flat spot on one side just because of this reason. My doctor recommended when laying him down to change the direction he way laying in each night. Sometimes it worked and other times it didn't because he would often want to face the same way. Then as he was spending more time awake during the day it helped a bit because he wasn't laying down as much. To this day (he is now 3.5), although his hair covers the spot, you can still kind of tell there is a bit of a flat spot.

[deleted account]

A friend of ours had a baby with a very flat head, she looked quite odd indeed. I don't believe her mum was lazy at all, in fact the mum is a highly motivated and very hands on kind of mum. The child never wore a helmet though and she looks fine now. Let's be honest, we are all bad mums. Bad, bad, bad!!!! We are all being made to feel guilty about something when it comes to parenting. Bad, lazy, ignorant..... no one really gives positive support any more. Just listen to "mum gossips", they are usually bitching about someone else's lack of parenting skills. I get sick of it because we are all just trying to do the best we can with the kids we have and the knowledge we have.

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Cutie_wita_bootie69 - posted on 07/04/2012

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Um, as a mom with a child who's head we are fixing because of a flat spot, absolutely not! I know that post that you put up says that just laying them in a bouncer or whatever all the time does it, but that isn't always the case. You have to switch sides when feeding. I was switching, but my husband was forgetting (I am not blaming him). My daughter also favored her right side, so whenever she did sleep or lay down or anything she would always lay on her right side, so her head was flatter on that side. She was getting in as much tummy time as she could stand (she was colic) every single day, sitting on my lap for hours, being held and so on. She didn't like her swing or her bouncer, so she was in one of our arms at all time. Luckily for us our doctor caught it at her 2 month check up. Told me I have until her 4 month check up to make an improvement myself and that we would go from there. We started feeding her on her left side only, propping her up left side when she sleeps and she is out of her swing and on her tummy a lot more now that she can handle it a little bit better. She also loves to sit in her bumbo. So no, I do not think it is always a result of bad parenting, sometimes these things just happen. My doctor told me she was favoring her right side and that wasn't helping matters.

Merry - posted on 03/16/2012

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I honestly never noticed much other babies head shapes! But when I had Fierna, every dr visit my dr kept saying how she has 'the perfect head shape!'

And I was thinking, huh, there's a perfect head shape? Lol

So I started looking specificly at other babies head shapes and yes now I do see some have flat heads in the back, some have egg shaped heads, some super round, and while I always thought Fierna was simply perfect anyways it's kinda cool to have something that my dr said she was 'perfect'

But seriously, before that I anger even looked at head shapes.

Even now I do NOT think good vs bad moms determines head shape!

Though I do wonder if hers is so 'perfect' cuz she had extreme reflux and so was never ever laying flat! She rarely ever tolerated the swing or bouncy chair, hated the car seat, and also slept in my arms so her head was in my elbow crook all nit which would encourage the back of her head to have that shape.



Like most moms, I was just doing what worked to keep her happy and how her head turned out wasn't my fault, nor can I take credit :)

Stifler's - posted on 03/16/2012

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However Logan was seriously offended by tummy time and had hardly any until 5 months and no flat spot just a bit of hair loss from sitting in the swing chair/laying on the floor.

Stifler's - posted on 03/16/2012

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I've never known anyone with a baby who had a helmet. Renae had a flat spot and she was always having tummy time and slept on her side.

Aleks - posted on 03/16/2012

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Then I am a bad mum.



My 1st born was quite easy going baby. And me being first time mum was following all the "recommendations", didn't I? You know the ones - plenty of floor play time. He was happy to lay around playing with toys or his feet/hands, mama or daddy.



He didn't actively roll until after 6 or 7 months of age (he rolled once onto his tummy and then back at 3mths and I think he freaked himself out and stopped completely. ie, he used to lift his feet/legs up a bit and play with them and that stopped after the "roll" incident! And we know that that is how babies roll, initially with feet in the air...). We didn't think he would crawl either - he only started after 10 months (but more like 10.5mths). He didn't sit upright on his own until about 7-8mths (could be later but I really can't remember anymore).



I also was very anxious over SIDS so I made very sure he ALWAYS slept on his back.

Basically, he was very frequently having his head against something (floor, high chair or baby car seat, pram, etc). I also liked to go for walks that he would have been in the pram as well. No I didn't carry him around much (not in the frequently in the sling type of thing). Though he did get to be carried around - don't get me wrong he wasn't left alone to his devices most of the time. However, I am not into carrying around much all of the time because of the strain it places on me physically (having large breasts puts enough strain on my lower back as it is, now add the increase by 2-3 sizes for breastfeeding and then on top of that a 4-6kg baby... its too much of a strain to do it at long stretches of time.)

So yeah.... he got a flat head! (Oh, and add to that genetics - Slav peoples tend to have flatter heads at the back - its typically how we are. Not all of us, but its more common than in other ethnicities).



My 2nd didn't get a flat head. She was a bit smaller, so was easier to carry a little bit more often, but still no where near constant. She was a total eager beaver to get out and about on her own. Whether her body was ready for it or not!!! She was wanting to be standing at 3-4mths - of course I had to holder up to standing position...lol. And at 5-6mths she could already sit up on her own for good stretches of time. She wanted to be "walked" at around 7-8mths of age (before she could even crawl on her own)!!!! I also changed the mattress in the baby bassinet she used to (part time) sleep in. It was a softer mattress (filled with tea tree "bits"/filling) as opposed to the quite hard and very sturdy one we used for my 1st born son. This was done specifically to avoid the flat head my son got.

Would she have gotten a flat head if she was more like my 1st born son (less eager to be getting on the move and to independence)???? I really don't know.

Ania - posted on 03/16/2012

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What? Crazy statement...My son was put on his tummy maybe like 10 times for few minutes when he was tiny and he hated it so I stopped then when he could roll over on his own at 3 months he started doing it himself. He never had a lat head, so obviously tummy time is not a single answer to flat head

MeMe - Raises Her Hand (-_-) (Mommy Of A Toddler And Teen) - posted on 03/16/2012

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I think a nice mix of both is a wonderful thing. I held my son lots but I also let him on the floor or in his playpen bassinet thingy, a bit too. If he cried though, he was right back in my arms. At least until he was older, around 3-4 months. Then he started spending more and more time on his mat but he was still more in my arms than anywhere. ;) You CANNOT spoil a baby!



Now, after 12 months, yes, you are chancing it then... But how many 12 month olds are just gonna sit there and be held all day long anyway.

Merry - posted on 03/16/2012

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We did no floor time til 4 months and Fierna crawled at 7 and walked at 9 so really, I don't think floor time predicts anything.

Mother, I just think any baby is better off in mothers arms then being left on the floor all day long. Too many babies get left to 'play' and they really just need mom to be holding them.

MeMe - Raises Her Hand (-_-) (Mommy Of A Toddler And Teen) - posted on 03/16/2012

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Elfrieda--



I am unsure that your son not crawling until 9 months had anything to do with not getting much tummy time. My son got lots of tummy time and he didn't crawl until 10 months. He did army crawl from about 8.5 months but no real crawling until 10 months. ;)

MeMe - Raises Her Hand (-_-) (Mommy Of A Toddler And Teen) - posted on 03/16/2012

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Nope, it does not mean the parent is a bad parent. It could mean they aren't giving them enough tummy time or changing their positions enough but that doesn't make them a bad parent, maybe a misinformed parent if anything.



It can also happen because babies sleep a lot and they typically sleep on their backs (my kids didn't, though, I didn't follow the stupid rule). A baby could also have their head form flattened when in the womb from pressure of the Mom's pelvis or with multiples. In any regard a flat back of the head is very common and fixes easily.



It could also be a rare but serious problem where the skull fuses together too quickly. This requires surgery to fix.

Lady Heather - posted on 03/16/2012

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Yeah, I jumped to the negative because you have no idea the comments I received because of my kid not walking. She probably could walk too. She had no physical problem. It just freaked her out. But pardon me if I get a little offended when a near two year old not walking is referred to as "ridiculous".

Elfrieda - posted on 03/16/2012

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I never did tummy time with my son because he hated it so much I didn't want to ruin our few minutes of non-crying with crying over something I could fix. He's always had an enormous round head, no flat spots. I think the only side-effect was that he didn't crawl until 9 months old.

[deleted account]

My first had none and my second did.I knew about flat head etc before i had her and i did everything they say to help avoid it and my daughter got it.It went back to normal around the 7-8 months mark.

She had lots of tum time, however she was not a big fan of it.She could roll over and back at 4 and a half mths.She loved to sleep on her back, no matter what way i put her she wanted to sleep on her back.

This those not determine a bad mother.That's crazy.

Mother - posted on 03/16/2012

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Isn't it funny how everyone jumped immediately to the negative? I never said it stopped them from developing...I never said it stopped them from walking....I never said it stopped a child's body from knowing how to work. I said, *I* would rather see a child on belly, exploring...rolling...moving and creeping then being up all the time. I never said there was any studies. I said we made fun of an Aunt because she didn't walk because she was carried all the time. It wasn't because she couldn't....it was because she was spoiled.

[deleted account]

no i don't, stuff happens and every baby is different. i'm not going to assume a mom isn't taking care of her kid just because it has a flat spot. my daughter had a flat spot but that is normal and it went away once she started sitting up and crawling. we held her and kept her out of the car seat and swing and all that good stuff but she slept a lot so there wasn't much we could do about it. i didn't worry about it, as long as she was doing everything babies did at her age she was doing great as far as i was concerned. as far as helmets, i would be more inclined to thinking it was an actual health issue, not a flat head. pffft...

Lady Heather - posted on 03/16/2012

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Yeah, some kids just walk later. There is no way to really know if the sling had anything to do with the kid walking late. My daughter wasn't quite two, but she was 21 months. She abhorred infant carriers of all sorts and spent tons of time on the floor. Still didn't walk. And she certainly wasn't spoiled! That's just really crazy to me seeing as I know how little influence I actually had when it came to her development.

Mother - posted on 03/16/2012

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I'd rather see a child on their tummy or playing in a swing then the mother carrying them around CONSTANTLY. A newborn, yes......my g/f put her baby in a sling and he was with her almost constantly. But once they are creeping and moving and more alert, I think they should be set down. It's how they learn to move and roll and crawl. We make fun of my daughters Aunt because she wouldn't walk. She would scream for someone to come and pick her up. She walked at 2 years old!!! So bad. She is still spoiled to this day!!! LOLOLOLOL....don't tell her I said that

Jenni - posted on 03/16/2012

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Based on my own experience, I'm going to have to say "no", not always at least. Ben always had the most perfect round, bowling ball head. I absolutely adored his head. It was flawless. Morgan had a very flat head, since birth. I'm not big on mechanisms either. I only used the swing and bouncy chair when I felt I had to. When I had to use the bathroom, cook dinner or attend to something where I couldn't be holding them. Morgan actually spent way more time on her tummy than Ben. She didn't mind tummy time, whereas Ben hated it. I also switched their position in the crib often. Morgan's head is still flatter than Ben's. I'd say I actually paid more attention to measures that would relieve a flat head with her than with Ben.



I imagine there are cases where flat head does occur due to infants being placed in mechanisms too often, or not being given enough tummy time. But that wasn't the case with us. I don't have much experience with helmet wearing, so I really can't speak on it.

Lady Heather - posted on 03/15/2012

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Your doctor gave you hell because your kid didn't crawl until 10 months??? He would have looooved me. 17 months. But she scooted just before a year. Before that she just sat like a lump and worked on her still impressive fine motor skills. My doctors never had a problem with me. Obviously by a year old we were making sure there was nothing wrong with her and such.

Vegemite - posted on 03/15/2012

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That's horrible that poor mum feels so guilty. My first had bad reflux and if I put him on his tummy he'd chuck on the floor then his face would fall in it. YUK! So I left him on his back and bought him a rotating mobile so he'd move his head around watching it and not leave his head in one spot. Lazy on my part but I thought it was the best solution but still he could have easily gotten a flat spot and I don't that would have been my fault. Poor thing didn't crawl until 10 months. The Dr gave me hell about that but I just decided that he was healthy and would develope in his own time and he did.

Sherri - posted on 03/15/2012

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NO!!! My oldest had a flat head because he was such a content baby and was very content to sit in his swing or seat and have me just talk to him and play with him.

Janice - posted on 03/15/2012

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My daughter was born with a condition called craniosynostosis. I wont go into a long explanation (unless requested) but I have spent much time on a support website for parents of children with this condition and there are many reasons why a baby may be wearing a helmet. If cranio is caught early some parents opt for endoscopic surgery which requires 6-18 months of wearing a helmet afterwards. Some children after surgery have spots that never fill in with bone and some must where a protective helmet till they have another surgery. Also some children have torticollis (which is not related to cranio) which is a tightening of the neck muscles and can cause a child to constantly keep their head on one side no matter what parents do and so they develop a flat spot. This require PT to fix.



None of these children have bad parents (well they might, but you get what I mean) but they often get mean comments from people who say things like "did you drop them on their head" :(



Most parents who have children with positional plagiocephaly, had no clue they were doing anything wrong. And as someone else said some babies are prone to developing the problem. I do not have twins but I can only imagine that this mom was doing her best in the overwhelming situation of caring for 2 newborns. Considering she was aware of such problem she probably should have been a bit more diligent about tummy time. But a "bad mom", I dont think so.

Of course those who really are neglectful parents, are probably more likely to have an infant with a flat head.

Lady Heather - posted on 03/15/2012

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Wtf. My kids both had flat spots because of intrauterine growth restriction. Call me a bad mum for having a fucked up uterus I guess. Anyways, once they are sitting up lots they usually go away pretty quick.

Johnny - posted on 03/15/2012

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Not a conclusion I would jump to. I've known kids wearing helmets for quite a few different reasons. Even with flat head, I wouldn't just think "bad parent". One of my friend's children had a esophogeal condition and couldn't do tummy time ever. Ironically, no flat head.

Jodi - posted on 03/15/2012

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I know *of* a couple babies that have flat heads due to some sort of condition, I have no idea what it is. I know one baby that had to wear the helmet because her mom always had her in the swing, and I mean always.



Honestly, I would probably wonder why the baby had a flat head, but since I know more babies that have flat heads due to uncontrollable factors than from lazy parenting, I wouldn't (probably) jump to that conclusion.

Merry - posted on 03/15/2012

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I agree with you on that one!

I know a girl in church who wears a helmet, I guess I assumed she had a special condition or something, not that her mom was lazy!

Her parents appear to be wonderful!

Kaitlin - posted on 03/15/2012

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WHAT? I read the piece. I mean, what kid couldn't use a little more tummy time right? But seriously? Some kids are more prone to flat heads than others, some kids take FOREVER to develop those muscles (while some babies are able to hold them up from day 1).



People who think other people are bad moms because their kid has a flat head are probably worried that they are bad moms themselves.

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