Many future parents first find out what is necessary to welcome a newborn into the house: from the cot to the stroller, it is good to be prepared so as not to have to think about the time of need. But there are some childcare items that still raise many questions, and which may be bought unnecessarily or are used at the last moment (it is not uncommon to find dad looking for a pacifier in the middle of the night!). Today we talk about the baby pillow: when to buy it, how to prefer it if to use it.
The head of the newborn
You have already noticed that your baby‘s head for a few days or weeks is disproportionate to the body: it’s all normal, don’t worry. The brain develops faster than the rest, which is why the baby’s head is very large at first. What is important, however, is to know that the graphic sutures, that is the junctions between the various bones of the skull, in newborns are not yet joined, which is why the so-called fontanel is felt . The reason is simple: this structure allows the newborn to pass more easily into the vaginal canal. However exposed, this area is by no means as fragile as it is thought.
Rather, since the baby’s head weighs a lot compared to the rest of the body, take care to hold it firmly each time you pick it up, as its neck is not yet strong enough to support it.
Sometimes, the baby’s head has bumps or, on the contrary, is flat in some places: normal conditions due to the positions assumed in the uterus and during labor.
The pillow to fight flat head
Among the reasons that push new parents to buy a pillow for babies, there is certainly plagiocephaly, which is a part of the skull more crushed than the others, which are more rounded. In most cases, this cosmetic problem resolves itself, but the pediatrician will suggest that you should consult an osteopath because in some cases the flat head could cause some discomfort due to strains or compressions.
There are special pillows for plagiocelafia , to be used when the baby is lying on his back and under the observation of the parents, to remedy the flat head which, as we said, is mostly an aesthetic problem.
The baby pillow and the risk of cot death
The baby pillow should be avoided to avoid the risks of cot death: although there is no evidence for now and cot death ( SIDS ) remains unclear, the evidence has shown that having objects in the cot – pillows, soft toys, etc. – increases the incidence, as well as sleeping on the stomach. For this reason, if you want your child to sleep peacefully on his stomach, there are cushions on the market with the shape of the baby’s head. To be avoided, however, when they start to roll.
The anti-suffocation pillow
Anti-suffocation pillows are considered a commercial product that can be dispensed with but is still safe. You can buy one, they have limited prices, and thanks to the open cell structure they allow air to circulate better, also favoring the transpiration of the skin.
What an age for the newborn pillow
When to start using the baby pillow and up to what age? In reality, in general, the pillow is avoidable for up to two years, and indeed it would be better not to use it to avoid SIDS. However, if your baby suffers from plagiocephaly or reflux, you can introduce the pillow right away, as long as you choose a suitable one and supervise the baby when he uses it (for example, you can use the one for the flat head during the day and when he stays awake. in a cot).
From the age of two, the green light to the pillow, if the child likes it.
The baby pillow is a non-essential product for the arrival of the baby, so you can get one even after birth, there is no rush!