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The 3 Top Benefits of Tummy Time for Your Baby

baby on tummy sucking his thumbTummy time has become an essential part of a new parent’s routine. Not only does it give babies fun and engaging experiences, but research shows that this simple activity can have countless positive effects on the health and development of your little one.

As a vital activity for your baby’s growth and development, tummy time is a simple, yet highly effective way to help your infant build strength in their neck, shoulders, and core muscles. Like the name suggests, tummy time involves placing your baby on their stomach for short periods while they are awake and supervised. Although it may not seem like much, this activity has significant benefits for your little one’s well-being.

Here are the top three reasons tummy time is crucial for your baby’s growth.

1. Strengthens Neck and Shoulder Muscles

One of the most critical aspects of prone play is that it helps your baby develop essential neck and shoulder muscles. These muscles are vital for your infant’s ability to hold their head up, roll over, crawl, and eventually walk. As your baby spends more time on their tummy, they will naturally begin to lift and turn their head, which strengthens these crucial muscles. This improved muscle strength helps with motor skills, but also prevents flat head syndrome (positional plagiocephaly).

2. Promotes Motor Skill Development

Tummy time is an excellent way to encourage your baby to explore their surroundings and develop their motor skills. As your baby becomes more comfortable on their stomach, they will begin to push up on their hands, reach for toys, and eventually crawl. These activities help improve their gross motor skills, such as balance and coordination. Prone play can also help develop fine motor skills as your baby grasps and manipulates toys during playtime.

3. Enhances Cognitive and Sensory Development

Spending time on their stomach allows your baby to experience the world from a new perspective, which is essential for their cognitive and sensory development. During tummy time, your baby can explore different textures, colors, and sounds, stimulating their curiosity and enhancing their learning abilities. This activity also helps improve your baby’s visual skills, as they practice focusing their eyes on objects at a closer distance.

How to Start

You can start tummy time with your baby on Mom’s or Dad’s chest, belly to belly. “A lot of babies like that better than just being placed on their stomachs by themselves,” said Dr. Eva.

She recommends starting with a few seconds and working your way up to a few minutes. “It’s crucial for a baby’s development to start that tummy time interaction right away,” added Dr. Eva.

It’s also a good idea to be creative with tummy time. Dr. Eva and Dr. Joe did tummy time on a physioball with Rocco, moving him in different directions to help with brain development. skills, as they practice focusing their eyes on objects at a closer distance.

Book an Appointment

Safe and gentle pediatric chiropractic can also help your baby get off to the healthiest start in life possible. Contact Clear Chiropractic to schedule an appointment!

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