Microcephaly is a condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than expected. During pregnancy, a baby’s head grows because the baby’s brain grows. Microcephaly can occur because a baby’s brain has not developed properly during pregnancy or has stopped growing after birth, which results in a smaller head size.
When should I be concerned about my baby’s head size?
If your baby’s head is measuring small or is not growing: Your baby’s doctor may be concerned about failure to thrive (when a child doesn’t take in enough calories or is unable to utilize them and doesn’t grow properly as a result).
Can babies have small heads normal?
Microcephaly is a condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than normal. It is most often present at birth (congenital). Most children with microcephaly also have a small brain and intellectual disability. Some children with small heads have normal intelligence.
Should I be concerned if my baby’s head is small?
Chances are your doctor will detect microcephaly at the baby’s birth or at a regular well-baby checkup. However, if you think your baby’s head is smaller than normal or isn’t growing as it should, talk to your doctor.
What is abnormal head circumference?
Macrocephaly refers to an overly large head. It’s often a symptom of complications or conditions in the brain. There’s a standard used to define macrocephaly: The circumference of a person’s head is more than two standard deviations above average for their age. Or, their head is larger than the 98th percentile.
What does baby head size indicate?
Preliminary studies have shown that 1-year-old babies with bigger heads score higher on IQ tests later in life. And bigger heads do tend to hold bigger brains.
Can you tell if your baby has microcephaly?
There are no specific tests to determine if a baby will be born with microcephaly, but ultrasound scans in the third trimester of pregnancy can sometimes identify the problem. There is no specific treatment for microcephaly.
What is normal head size for newborn?
The average head circumference at birth is about 13.5 in. (34.5 cm). By the end of the first month, it increases to about 15 in. (37.6 cm).
What happens if baby isn’t growing properly?
If your baby keeps gaining some weight, an early delivery (before the due date) may not be needed. But if your baby is not growing at all or has other problems, your doctor may decide that an early delivery could help. In this case, your doctor may want to induce labor.