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It's Tummy time :)

Tummy time is definitely something you've heard of if you're a first-time parent or a mom-to-be. Experienced moms and elders surely have informed you of several benefits of tummy time. So, you might be wondering why you should bother reading this article. Not only will we explain the advantages, but we will also explore some easy activities that your child may enjoy during tummy time.

What is tummy time?

Tummy time, as the name says, involves laying your baby on their tummy and allowing them to play. I would say take it as your baby's first workout. The second key question that arises is how soon you can begin. The answer is when you get home from the hospital. While there are various benefits (which we shall discuss further below), tummy time helps strengthen the muscles required for lifting their heads.

The Advantages of Tummy Time

  1. The best exercise for developing the core muscles of the neck, back, and shoulders, which are required for rolling over, sitting up, crawling, and walking.

  2. Torticollis is a neck disorder that prevents some babies from moving their stiff neck. Tummy time will help them relax their neck and eventually move more easily.

  3. Babies who spend too much time on their backs develop a flat area on the back of their heads. Placing them on the belly will aid in the removal or prevention of these spots.

  4. Newborns cry a lot during their first few days, which might be due to hunger or colic. To soothe and settle a colicky infant, try tummy time.

  5. Tummy time is associated with improved cardiovascular health and body mass index, according to a study published in Pediatrics in May 2020.

So, how should you do tummy time? Always check and clean the area thoroughly before laying your baby on their stomach. It should be on a safe surface; do not attempt it on a sofa or a rough surface where your child might roll and injure themselves. Once everything is in place, place the little one on their tummy. Make sure their arms are in front of them and not at their sides. Your little one is ready for their play time.

Tummy time activities

  1. Keep some soft toys around and entice your baby to reach for them, eventually aiding in muscular development.

  2. Put a mirror in front of your child and watch them make various faces.

  3. Make family time by lying down with your child and talking, singing, or listening to music.

  4. Even more exciting, lie down on your back with your baby on your tummy and try performing push-ups (remember, this is for fun, not exercise) and get ready for some laughs and giggles.

  5. Massage your child a little while they enjoy their tummy time.

Although tummy time is good for the overall development of your child, not all kids like it. If you see your child is uncomfortable, turn them on their back and try again another time. Begin with 1–5 minutes under strict supervision and progressively increase the duration and sessions each day.

Always remember, tummy to play, back to sleep. If your baby falls asleep while doing tummy time, turn them onto their back and let them sleep.

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