Plagiocephaly is a relatively new diagnosis and first became popular after the 1990’s when the National Institutes of Health launched the “Back to Sleep” movement. Before this movement, the common wisdom was to place infants to sleep on their stomachs so that they wouldn’t choke or suffocate if they were to spit up at night. Research suggested that in fact infants who slept on their backs pretty much never choked to death on their own spit up, and more importantly, were at a markedly lower risk for dying of SIDS. SIDS—or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome—is the unexplained death of an infant while sleeping. Although no one knows exactly what causes SIDS, researchers believe that infants who sleep on their stomachs might have trouble rousing themselves if they need more oxygen, whereas infants that sleep on their backs can simply turn their heads to get more air. Consistent with this theory, proponents of the Back to Sleep movement (and any doctor or nurse you talk to today) urge parents to put their infants to sleep on their backs instead of on their stomachs. Their recommendations turned out to be really good ones

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