Babies Sleeping On One Side – Is It Safe?

As a mother, you may have observed several patterns about your baby’s activities. Babies spend a lot of time for sleeping but one thing that strikes you the most when they sleep is the preference to sleep on the side. All the mothers have a doubt is it okay for the baby to sleep on the side, the answer is a big no because they can lead to a certain health condition problem to our baby.

      #1. Harlequin Colour Change.

Harlequin color change is unilateral erythema, It is usually seen in the first week of the newborn baby. There is always a clear demarcating line that runs through the center of the body of the child in this case, the side in which the baby is asleep will changes the color into pink or red, while the other half remains unaffected or normal. This color change occurs when the child sleeps on his side for hours. However, it is to be noted that it may look alarming, this color change condition does not have any ill-effects on the child. After switching the side of the baby the colors fade away in a matter of minutes. This condition occurs due to gravity affecting the blood flow in the immature blood vessels of the child, causing the accumulation of red blood cells near the skin.

Treatment: This is a harmless condition and disappears on its own.

  #2. Flatheads

The skull of the newborn baby is soft and malleable which allow the skull to grow and expand at the same rate as the brain. Flatheads condition occur due to the pressure builds up at some point of the skull, causing it to go concave or flatten, or even sink inwards. This happens when the baby’s head is placed in a single position repeatedly to the extent that pressure builds up at a single spot on the skull. Even though the child has been sleeping straight, but his head was turned to the side also Flatheads can occur in children.

Treatment: This problem is rectified using braces called baby helmets. This is manufactured by certified manufacturers or hospitals and help re-position the skull of the child.

  #3.  Torticollis

Torticollis can occur due to several reasons, one of the main reason is the poor positioning of the baby while sleeping. This is an abnormal tilting of the neck in one direction this occurs due to the severe shortening of the sternocleidomastoid muscle that connects the lateral side of the head to the clavicle. This condition will affect both the growth of the muscle and abnormal bone.

Treatment: This condition is rectified by Physical therapy will help release the stiffness in the muscles. The harness is usually wrapped around the body and has a soft pad near the neck. This pad helps to push the head in the opposite direction, which gradually brings the neck to the normal position.

   #4.  Risk of Choking

Sleeping on the side creates torsion in the windpipe that can make breathing difficult for the newborn baby. Also, it can result in the accumulation of regurgitated food around the tracheal opening which will create a choking hazard. This also occurs during tummy sleeping. These positions will increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.

Treatment: Do not allow the baby to sleep on his side to prevent choking and sudden infant death syndrome.

Remedies To Prevent Your Baby From Side sleeping
  • Place your baby on the back during sleeping:

This is not about the comfort of the baby safety have the higher priority. Back position is the best way of preventing fatal medical conditions and also help to reduce upper respiratory infections. This can be done by making him sleep on his back from the begin itself as possible.

  • Do not place unnecessary support structures:

Do not try to place any support structures on the crib or the bed of the baby. Certain support structures may even cause the baby to roll over to the side in case he moves during his sleep.

  • Never use sleep positioners or wedges:

Sleep positioners are not safe for newborn babies. In fact, some the Sleep positioners are alarmingly designed to ensure that the baby sleeps on the side. So You must never use such positioners or sleep wedges for babies. Also, avoid sleep positioners that help the baby to sleep on the back because it has been categorically proven to pose a suffocation hazard.


  • Swaddling may increase the risk of rollover:

Swaddling will increase the risk of him rolling over to the side.  Because swaddling creates a smooth cylindrical surface around the baby that makes it easy for him to roll over.  Swaddling also increase the risk of SIDS

  • Keep altering the baby’s sleep positions:

To reduce the risk of flatheads in children. Switch the position of his head to the left and right at night alternatively, when he lies on his back.

Newborn baby girl sleeping on blue sheets at home


Still, you have questions, we are here to help you comment below.

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