Experts say babies need more than “tummy time” to prevent developing “flat spots” on their heads.
Paediatric physiotherapist Liz Williams told 9NEWS she’s noticed an increasing number of babies with the condition known as plagiocephaly, which causes “flat spots”, or uneven head shapes.
1,300 babies are treated each year for a condition called ‘flat head’.
“They not only get flat at the back, they bulge at the front and their ears can move and their eyes can move and it’s quite alarming for parents,” Ms Williams said.
Researchers have said parents now need to incorporate “face time”, and that it’s never too early to start.
In conjunction with the University of Melbourne, the Royal Children’s Hospital is endorsing a new Facetime Plus Tummy Time fact sheet to distribute to new parents.
What can you do?
• Support newborn babies in the curled up position
• Choose your time for playing:
– when baby is looking at you
– after nappy change
– in the bath
• Tummy time can be when they are lying on you
• Face time can be in your arms
• Both face time and tummy time can be on the floor
• Look at their eyes (eye contact):
– imitate baby making mouth shapes
– get them to follow your eyes and turn their head themselves.
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