Suggestions for Tummy Time
Providing your young infant with tummy time each day will help promote his/her growth and development as well as help prevent flat spots from forming on his/her head. Most infants will resist being placed on their tummies at first and some will even cry and struggle with the task. A parent’s persistence is critical though because strengthening the muscles groups used during tummy time will later help his/her child with gross motor skills such as rolling over and pulling up.
Here are a few tips to help make tummy time more enjoyable both for you and your baby.
- Start very early. Placing your baby on your chest while lying down or reclining will help him/her get used to the feeling of pressure on his/her tummy. You can also place your baby across your lap.
- Make sure you start gradually. Tummy time is a work in progress and you do not want to tire your baby out or frustrate them by leaving them on their tummy too long.
- Distraction is a fantastic tool to use during tummy time. Use rattles, music, brightly colored objects, etc. to get your baby’s attention and to get them to hold his/her head up high.
- Get down on your baby’s level. Lie down on the floor facing your child and talk or read to him/her. This can be a great time to bond with your little one.
- Schedule tummy time into your regular routine. If you set aside a specific time to do tummy time with your child each day it will eventually turn into a habit.