FDA Says Head-Shaping Pillows for Infants Can Be Dangerous: What Parents Should Know

  • The Food and drug administration is warning that mom and dad must not use head-shaping pillows for infants.
  • The head-shaping pillow is intended so that infants do not stop up with “flat head” syndrome.
  • But the pillow can lead to a risky scenario for young infants that can end result in suffocation or dying.

The U.S. Food stuff and Drug Administration (Food and drug administration) is recommending that mothers and fathers and caregivers prevent using infant head-shaping pillows declaring that they can produce an unsafe sleeping atmosphere for babies.

“The use of head-shaping pillows can create an unsafe rest ecosystem for infants and may perhaps lead to the hazard of suffocation and loss of life,” reported the Food and drug administration in a assertion.

To recognize the new suggestion, it’s essential to go back a little bit to have an understanding of the intention of a head-shaping pillow to start off with.

A head shaping pillow is a smaller cushion, normally with a hole in the center, developed to cradle an infant’s head in an attempt to avoid the toddler from acquiring “flat head syndrome,” or positional plagiocephaly.

“Positional plagiocephaly is the flattening of the head in a young toddler, which can create due to the infant continually lying on its again,” said Dr. Rebecca Fisk, a pediatrician with Lenox Hill Healthcare facility in New York. “It can also be current at birth and is far more typical in numerous or premature births, or can be brought about by the baby’s situation in the womb.”

In accordance to Children’s Countrywide, positional plagiocephaly does not typically result in severe complications. A a lot more really serious ailment termed craniosynostosis is a thing to be cautious of, which is where by the infant’s skull bones join alongside one another too early. But a head-shaping pillow would not be effective for this situation.

Head-shaping pillows are marketed with statements to enhance the condition of an infant’s head and to maximize its symmetry. It ought to be famous that the use of the head-shaping pillow is for aesthetic applications, but there is not sufficient proof that it truly adjustments the shape of an infant’s head.

According to the Food and drug administration, head-shaping pillows can increase the risk of unexpected sudden infant dying (SUID), like unexpected infant loss of life syndrome (SIDS), and suffocation and dying and should really not be used at all.

“The Fda is warning dad and mom that these pillows are not only pointless to address positional plagiocephaly, but that they are a prospective suffocation hazard within just the infant’s sleeping environment,” stated Dr. Rachel Prete, a pediatrician at Orlando Wellbeing Arnold Palmer Hospital for Youngsters. “The pillow can bring about the infant’s head to be tilted upward, placing downward strain on the patient’s airway, and making it tricky for the toddler to breathe.”

Prete reported infants ought to be put to rest on their backs on a flat business mattress lined with a cosy fitted sheet.

“There really should be no extraneous products in the bassinet or crib, which includes soft toys, blankets, pillows, sleep positions, soft bedding, or crib bumpers,” mentioned Fisk. “These merchandise can bring about the infant to come to be trapped or suffocate. These safety measures are to prevent hazard of sudden infant death (SIDS).”

Fisk added that these head-shaping pillows can also interfere with the analysis of a unique ailment referred to as craniosynostosis.

“craniosynostosis [is a] premature fusion or closure of the fibrous joints concerning the bones of the toddler cranium, which is taken care of with various modalities, such as ongoing helmet use and can frequently demand surgical correction,” Fisk stated.

In most situations, flat head syndrome will go away on its individual as an toddler grows. It is not a result in for problem.

“The external forces related to triggering the deformity of positional plagiocephaly are no more time current when the baby is ready to sit, which happens as early as 6 months,” additional Fisk. “At this time the deformity starts to make improvements to. Any remaining flattening is typically minor and results in being covered with hair as the youngster grows.”

Prete claims mom and dad can boost tummy time if they are apprehensive.

“Most positional plagiocephaly resolves on its very own without any intervention,” claimed Prete.

Fisk said infants must not slumber with a pillow right up until they more than a 12 months previous.

“In my steering to mother and father, I suggest that they only use a blanket following the initially birthday in the crib and hold out to use a pillow right until the child has transitioned to a bed,” Fisk mentioned.

If you do have a head-shaping pillow for your toddler, the Fda recommends that you throw it away and not donate it. They also advise that if your infant has an strange head form to talk to your infant’s healthcare provider.