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赤ちゃん

赤ちゃんの真ん丸頭のため?ドーナツ枕が古いと言われる7つの理由

赤子

赤ちゃんは、お座りやハイハイを始めるようになるまではほぼ一日中寝ています。よく食べてよく寝てくれるのは喜ばしいことですが、気になるのが赤ちゃんの頭の形ですね。赤ちゃんの頭がい骨は柔らかいため、いつも下にしている部分が平らになり、いびつな形になってしまいます。

親としては、「一生この頭の形だったらどうしよう…」と悩んでしまう方もいるようですね。そこで、赤ちゃんの頭の形を整えてくれると言われているのがドーナツ枕です。日本ではお馴染みの育児グッズですが、実は最近ドーナツ枕を使う赤ちゃんの数は減っており、もはや昭和の育児用品などと言われることもあるのです。

本記事では、ドーナツ枕が使われなくなってしまった7つの理由を解説します。赤ちゃんの頭の形が気になって、ドーナツ枕の購入を考えている方は参考にしてみてください。

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ドーナツ枕が流行った理由

ドーナツ

かつて、昭和時代は多くの家庭でドーナツ枕を育児に取り入れていました。実際に自分もドーナツ枕で寝ていたらしい、という方は多いでしょう。ここで、当時ドーナツ枕が人気を集めた理由を振り返ってみましょう。

当時は、以下のようなドーナツ枕の効果が謳われていました。

  • 頭の形が良くなる:絶壁頭になるのを防ぐ
  • 寝相の癖を矯正する:左右どちらかのみを下にして眠ることがなくなる
  • 耳の形が良くなる:仰向けで寝ることで耳が潰れるのを防ぐ

今でも、昭和時代に育児をした世代の方はドーナツ枕を使わない育児に違和感を感じるといいます。なぜ、現在はドーナツ枕が使われなくなってしまったのでしょうか。

ドーナツ枕が古いと言われる理由

なぜドーナツ枕が育児アイテムの定番から外れてしまったのか、それは以下のような理由によるものです。

あせもができやすい

ドーナツ枕は構造上高さのあるものが多いため、首のしわの部分にあせもができてしまったという声をよく聞きました。その他にも、後頭部の浮いた部分の汗を吸収してくれるものがないため、頭にあせもができてしまうという例も。

不衛生になりやすい

かつてドーナツ枕は洗えないものがほとんどで、汗をいっぱいかく赤ちゃんが使う枕としては不衛生だというデメリットはどうしても避けられませんでした。しかし、今は洗えるタイプのドーナツ枕も販売されているので、この点は改善されたと言えます。

頭を左右に動かしにくい

頭をすっぽりとホールドしてくれるしっかりした作りのドーナツ枕は、頭を左右に動かしにくく、寝返りが打てないというデメリットもあります。寝相矯正のためとはいえ、赤ちゃんによってはストレスになってしまうことも。

嘔吐物が詰まって窒息の恐れがある

仰向けで寝相を固定するドーナツ枕は、もし赤ちゃんが食べたものをもどしてしまった場合は非常に危険です。嘔吐物がのどに詰まって窒息してしまう恐れがあります。ミルクの後はげっぷが出るまでは横にしてあげて、寝ているときも時々は横向きにしてあげることが必要です。

すぐにずれてしまう

頭の形や寝相を矯正する目的があっても、赤ちゃんの寝相が悪かったり自分で枕をどかしてしまったりして、なかなか思い通りの場所に固定することが難しいようです。その都度枕の位置を直すお母さんにストレスが溜まってしまうのが難点です。

後頭部がハゲてしまう

仰向けに姿勢を固定してくれるドーナツ枕は、ずっと使っていると後頭部の髪が薄くなってしまうことも。ただ、乳幼児の頃は枕の有る無しに関わらず、どんな姿勢で寝ていても頭の一部が薄くなってきてしまうことがあるようです。これはもちろんじきに治りますが、育児中のお母さんは気になってしまいますよね。

頭の形は自然に治るという説もある

ドーナツ枕を使わなくても、子供が成長するに従い自然と頭の形が綺麗になってきた、という声もよく聞かれます。こういう声もあるので、ドーナツ枕の購入を見送る家庭が増えてきているようです。

ドーナツ枕の代わりに使う枕

最近は、ドーナツ枕を使わなくなった代わりにどのような枕を使っているのでしょうか。

首がすわる前は、枕というよりは薄いタオルを3、4つ折りにしたもので十分です。できれば、色は白いものがいいでしょう。これは、赤ちゃんがもどしてしまったときに嘔吐物の色が分かるようにするためです。

首が座った後でも同様で、タオルを畳んだものが便利です。汗をかきやすく、枕が汚れやすい赤ちゃんにとっては取り替えやすく高さが低いものが一番ですね。最近では、こういった簡易的な枕が赤ちゃんのためにも一番いいと産科で勧められるようです。

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まとめ:頭の形は遺伝という説も

本記事では、ドーナツ枕が古いと言われる7つの理由をご紹介してきました。ここでもう一度、その内容をおさらいしましょう。

  • あせもができやすい
  • 不衛生になりやすい
  • 頭を左右に動かしにくい
  • 嘔吐物が詰まって窒息の恐れがある
  • すぐにずれてしまう
  • 後頭部がハゲてしまう
  • 頭の形は自然に治るという説もある

ドーナツ枕にはメリットもありますが、こういったデメリットが多いのも事実です。しかし、これらのデメリットも使い方によっては克服できるものなので、どうしても使いたい人はチャレンジしてみましょう。

そして、最近では、頭の形は結局遺伝であるという説も唱えられています。お子さんがある程度大きくなったら、あまり神経質にならずに自然に任せてもいいでしょう。

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