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Raising a child
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January 4, 2023

Flat head pillow - why do I need one?

A flat head syndrome pillow can significantly reduce the likelihood of your baby developing a flattened skull, a very common disorder during the first four months of life. These pillows do not only serve as a preventive measure, but are successful in treating this particular syndrome. 

When to use an anti flat head pillow 

In the majority of cases, flat head syndrome develops in infants between two and four months old. This is why it’s good to use a flat head baby pillow as a form of prevention from when your newborn is just a few weeks old. 

The Ministry of Health recommends that babies sleep without any soft objects inside their crib or cot to prevent SIDS (cot death syndrome).

Although most baby pillows for flat head syndrome have a slim design and are breathable, you can use one whenever your baby is lying on their backs and awake, in order to minimise any risk.

When watching mum and dad move around from their bouncer, when lounging in their crib or pram, when playing together on their mat... 

In fact, young infants spend most of their time lying on their backs, which is why their little delicate heads tend to flatten out... But more on this in the next paragraph! 

Why is flathead syndrome so common? 

In 1994, the American Academy of Paediatrics launched a campaign to promote the importance of babies sleeping on their backs as a preventive measure against SIDS (commonly known as cot death syndrome). Since then, SIDS has been reduced by about 50%. That is why it is essential these guidelines are followed. However, there is a 'side effect': plagiocephaly (flat head syndrome). 

During the first few months of life, an infant’s skull is still soft and malleable and subject to deformation. Spending most of the time with their tiny head resting in the same position puts pressure on their skull. 

Should I vary the positions my baby lies in, so they don’t spend too long on their backs? No, absolutely not! We just need to implement a few little tricks, such as holding our baby in our arms or using a baby carrier as much as possible, as well as using a good flat head pillow for babies. 

How do flat head pillows prevent and cure plagiocephaly (flat head syndrome)? 

The main characteristic to look for in a good baby pillow flat head is the presence of a central indent, where baby's head rests. 

The pillow then becomes progressively thicker towards the edge. This, in addition to soft material, such as memory foam, which moulds to each baby's head, reduces localised pressure where their head is in contact with the pillow. 

This particular design aspect also, and most importantly, helps keeps a baby's head straight, preventing common conditions such as lateral plagiocephaly, when an infant’s head flattens out on one side, and positional torticollis, which is caused by babies always turning their head to the same side. 

What features are important in a good flat-head pillow? 

Your baby’s health and wellbeing are vital, which is why you should pay attention to the features of the pillow you choose. Here's what to look out for: 

Size 

First of all, pay attention to the size of the pillow: it shouldn’t be too big or too small for their head, otherwise their head may slip off from the pillow, and your baby won’t reap the benefits. It must also be slim and compact, just like Koala Perfect Head

Material 

Quality can be noted by the materials used. Fabric should be hypoallergenic, gentle on a baby’s skin and certified. 

Koala Perfect Head flat head pillow range is made of high-quality German memory foam, while the materials used are Oeko Tex, REACH and Hypoallergenic Material certified. 

Removable and washable pillowcase

Young babies frequently bring up milk and drool. That’s why it’s essential their pillow is easy and practical to wash.  

Koala Perfect Head pillowcase can be removed with a swift gesture and machine washed at 30°. Additional pillowcases can be purchased separately, so you can be sure to always have a spare one to hand. 

Attention to detail 

When choosing a flat head pillow for your baby, paying attention to a few small details, makes all the difference. For example, whether it has been designed in collaboration with doctors and medical experts in infant plagiocephaly. Or if it holds certification from key bodies.

Koala Perfect Head and Koala Perfect Head Maxi pillows are Class 1 Medical Devices, have received top marks of 100% from midwives at Hebammen-testen.de and have been recognised as ergonomic by the German Institute for Health and Ergonomics. 

We often talk about protecting our baby's tiny head whilst they are lying down, but it is equally important to protect it whilst breastfeeding as well. Think about it for a moment: how many hours a day do you spend cradling your baby in your arms, breastfeeding and otherwise? Even your arm can prove too rigid for their delicate little head. That's why we created Koala Perfect Head Breastfeeding, to protect your baby wherever they are!