Development Of "Rolling Over" In Babies

4 min read

After enjoying his first smile, turning your way while hearing your voice, holding his favorite rattle now you will be waiting for his next milestone- mobility. Till now it was easy for you to handle your young one because he was lying down there patiently for your attention. You did not also have to think about his safety when leaving him alone in his room while going to get him something from the other room.
Once he starts rolling over, easy days are gone and you will become more watchful and vigilant (which is going to continue all your life as a mother). Once your child can hold his head steady and unsupported, you will be waiting for him to surprise you by starting to roll over. Naturally, lots of questions and doubts will arise during these period. Find out everything about Development Of “Rolling Over” In Babies
Baby tries to roll over

When will my baby start rolling over?
How can I encourage my baby to roll over?
How can I help my baby roll over?
When should parents worry about their baby not rolling over?

When Will My Baby Start Rolling Over?

Usually babies start rolling over around 4 months. Little earlier and a little later in terms of months is totally normal. We could say roughly around 4 to 6 months he will start to roll over. We can divide the whole rolling over process into 3 steps:

  1. Tummy to back: This will take place between 2 to 5 months
  2. Back to side: This will take place between 4 to 5.5 months
  3. Back to tummy: This will take place between 5.5 to 7.5 months

Stronger neck and hand muscles and upper body strength are the factors which make the baby roll over. This can be achieved by tummy time that you give your baby, when he lifts his head high and seeks his arms’ support. Arching the back, kicking the legs, and rocking on the stomach are some other stimulation that will help your baby develop the strength. Some babies first experience with mobility is rolling over, while others may graduate to crawling. This varies from one baby to another. So don’t worry if your baby is a little late to reach the milestone but your friend’s baby who is born on the same day can. As long as your little one is gaining new skills and growing at a healthy pace, you should not worry.

How Can I Encourage My Baby To Roll Over?

Your baby’s first roll over will be a surprise to both you and him. So give him a cheer or a clap to make him know he has done a positive thing. The most effective way to help your child to roll is to give him ample tummy time and hence strengthen his muscles. Once he starts rolling effortlessly you should encourage him to roll in both directions (this will help to develop muscle equally on both sides of his body). For this you can keep his favorite toy out of reach on the both sides alternatively and ask him to reach it. When he manages to roll towards it, applaud his effort. Remember, he needs your assurance because this new game can be quite alarming for him. Read more in detail about Tummy times for babies here.

How Can I Help My Baby Roll Over?

1. Watch your little one for readiness:

Watch your young one for the following signs when he is lying on his tummy:

  • Lifting his head up
  • Reaching for the toys
  • This signals that your little one’s back and neck muscles are strong enough for his next milestone

2. Allow your baby to have sufficient tummy time:

Tummy time plays an important role in developing major motor skills of your baby. For arching against the gravity and eventually for the rolling over, the strengthening of their neck and back muscles are necessary. So making your baby practice being on his tummy very is very important because it will speed up the muscle development as he tries to lift his body and head upBaby on tummy time

3. Minimize the time your baby spends in baby equipment:

Allowing your baby to spend the majority of their waking hours in baby equipment such as baby swings and bouncer chairs will prevent them from practicing their new motor skill.

When Should Parents Worry About Their Baby Not Rolling Over?

Babies develop skills at their own rate. So don’t compare your baby’s development with another baby and start to worry. If your baby was born prematurely (that is before 37 weeks of pregnancy), he will experience delays in reaching milestones which is normal. It is seen that some babies skip the hang of rolling altogether (can you believe it!) and go ahead with crawling and sitting up. You should talk to your child’s doctor if your baby:

  • Is not able hold his head steady at about 6 Months?
  • Is not trying to reach for the objects
  • Hasn’t moved on to sit at 6 months of age

Once your baby starts to attempt rolling over, never ever leave him unattended, even for a few seconds in the bed, changing table or any other high surfaces because we can’t predict when the first rolling over will happen.
Developmental Milestone: Grasping – Click here

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