So you and your little one have managed to nail Tummy Time…in a fashion. But what should you expect from your baby and at what stage?
For lots of babies, Tummy Time can be stressful and they just don’t like it. So there will obviously be some differences in the speed at which they progress, compared to those who take to it from the onset. For any Premature babies (born before 37 weeks gestation) you should always consider their corrected gestational age (CGA) when looking at developmental milestones. For Premmie babies or those who may have needed post-birth support, they too may progress at slightly slower rates as they may have had more limited opportunities to experience Tummy Time.
But in general, up to approximately 6 weeks old, you will be looking for your baby to be able to start to turn their head when their face is cheek to the floor. They may be very bent up when placed on their tummy to start with-especially if they had adopted this tucked position whilst in utero. You may also start to notice that they may attempt to lift their head for a few seconds at a time.
By about 3 months they will push up onto their elbows and lift their head to about 45 degrees, although they may still have it turned to the side. They will usually have elbows behind shoulders and should be able to tolerate Tummy Time for at least 1 minute at a time, if not longer, without becoming upset. Keep an eye out that baby is happy to turn their head to either side and is not developing a head turn preference.
By 6 months they will usually be able to lift their head fully and turn to either side. They will push up with elbows in front of shoulders and may even have started to shift weight for rolling and/or reaching.
What should I do if my baby is not following the milestones above?
It can be a worrying time bringing your little one home, but try not to put yourselves under too much pressure. But if you feel that your baby is not progressing with their development in the way that they should, please discuss it with a health professional. Your GP or Health Visitor should be able to help. However if you have real concerns, you can book your baby in for a Baby Development check with one of our Paediatric Physiotherapists.
Please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or find out more information about our fees and services here: https://therapystars.co.uk/fees/
PS: Don’t forget…..little and often is the key to stress-free (or less-stress) Tummy Time!