Tummy time is an important activity for babies that involves placing them on their stomachs while they are awake and supervised. This activity helps babies to develop their muscles, coordination, and cognitive skills. For example, tummy time is crucial for developing a baby’s neck, shoulder, and arm muscles and their ability to roll over, crawl, sit up, and eventually walk. It also helps to improve their vision, spatial awareness, and problem-solving skills.
In this blog post by Care for Child, we will discuss the importance of tummy time for a baby’s development in more detail. We will explore the benefits of tummy time, how to do tummy time with your baby, common concerns parents may have about tummy time, and tips for making tummy time more comfortable for your baby. By the end of this post, you will better understand why tummy time is so important and how you can incorporate it into your baby’s daily routine.
Benefits of Baby Tummy Time
Tummy time refers to the practice of placing your baby on their stomach while they are awake and supervised. This activity helps babies to develop their muscles, coordination, and cognitive skills. Here are some of the benefits of baby tummy time:
- Strengthens neck, shoulder, and arm muscles: When your baby is on their stomach, they have to use its neck and arm muscles to lift its head and push up. This helps to strengthen these muscles and prepare them for future milestones like rolling over, crawling, and sitting up.
- Improves coordination: Tummy time also helps to improve your baby’s coordination by encouraging them to use both sides of their body equally.
- Reduces the risk of the flat head syndrome: Spending too much time on your back can cause your baby’s head to flatten in one spot. Tummy time can help to prevent this by giving your baby a chance to rest on their stomach.
- Improves vision: When your baby is on their stomach, they must lift their head to see their surroundings. This helps to improve their vision and eye muscle control.
- Enhances spatial awareness: Tummy time also helps your baby to develop a sense of space and learn about their environment.
- Boosts problem-solving skills: As your baby becomes more comfortable with tummy time, they may start to reach for toys or try to move around. This helps to improve their problem-solving skills and encourages exploration.
How to Do Baby Tummy Time
Now that you know the benefits of baby tummy time, you may wonder how to do it. Here are some tips for getting started:
- Start Early
Wondering when to start tummy time? You can begin tummy time when your baby comes home from the hospital. Aim for 2-3 sessions of tummy time per day, starting with just a few minutes at a time and gradually increasing as your baby gets stronger. As your baby gets older, you can gradually increase their time on their tummy.
- Use a Firm Surface
Place your baby on a firm, flat surfaces like a play mat or blanket. Avoid using soft surfaces like beds or sofas, as these can be dangerous for your baby. Ensure the surface is clean and free of any objects that could be a choking hazard.
- Get Down on Their Level
Get down on the floor with your baby so you can interact with them and encourage them to lift their head up. Talk to your baby, make eye contact, and smile to help them feel comfortable and engaged.
- Use Toys
Place toys or objects in front of your baby to encourage them to look up and reach for them. Choose toys that are bright, colourful, and easy to grasp. You can also use a small mirror to help your baby see themselves and develop their sense of self-awareness.
- Go Diaper Free
One way to make tummy time more comfortable for your baby is to make it diaper-free time. This can help prevent diaper rash and allow your baby’s skin to breathe. Make tummy time diaper-free with skin-friendly underwear such as SuperBottoms Padded Underwear. You can also choose to keep your baby in regular underwear & use a Quick Dry Mat under them to avoid any mess.
- Make it Fun
Sing songs, talk to your baby, and make funny faces to keep them engaged and entertained. You can also use diaper-free essentials as an accessory to make tummy time more comfortable for your baby. These include items like waterproof mats, absorbent pads, and washable pads that can be placed under your baby during tummy time. These accessories can help protect your floors and furniture while providing a soft, comfortable surface for your baby to lie on.
Some parents may have concerns about tummy time, such as what to do if their baby doesn’t like it or seems uncomfortable. Here are some tips for addressing common concerns:
- If your baby doesn’t like tummy time, try starting with just a few minutes at a time and gradually increasing as they get more comfortable.
- If your baby seems uncomfortable, try placing a rolled-up towel or blanket under their chest to elevate them slightly.
- If your baby falls asleep during tummy time, it’s okay to let them stay there for a little while. Just make sure they are supervised and on a firm surface.
In conclusion, baby tummy time is essential for your baby’s development. It helps to strengthen their muscles, improve their coordination, and boost their cognitive skills. By following the tips outlined in this post, you can help your baby get the most out of tummy time and set them up for success in the future.
- Tummy time is an important activity for your baby’s development, as it helps to strengthen their muscles, improve their coordination, and boost their cognitive skills.
- To do tummy time with your baby, start early, use a firm surface, get down on their level, use toys, and make it fun.
- To make tummy time more comfortable for your baby, you can consider using diaper-free essentials like waterproof mats, absorbent pads, and washable pads. This can help prevent diaper rash and allow your baby’s skin to breathe.