The Importance of Prone Time for Your Baby's Development
Prone time is an essential activity for your baby's growth and development. This is when your baby lies face down on a blanket on the floor or on your chest and begins to explore and strengthen their muscles. Here are a few reasons why tummy time is so important for your baby:
1- Helps Develop Motor Skills
Prone time helps your baby develop the neck, shoulder and back muscles needed to crawl, sit and eventually walk. It also helps strengthen the arms, wrists and hands, which will be important for grasping objects and other fine motor skills.
2- Prevents Flat Head Syndrome
Spending too much time on their back can cause flat head syndrome, where your baby's head forms a flat spot. Tummy time can help prevent this by giving your baby a chance to turn their head and move around.
3- Encourages Exploration
While your baby is lying face down, they have the chance to explore their surroundings from a new perspective. They can see and reach for objects, which helps develop their hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness.
4. Promotes Digestion
Lying on your stomach can also aid digestion as it puts gentle pressure on your baby's tummy and relieves gas and constipation.
So how do you do prone time safely? Here are a few tips:
Start with short prone periods, like a few minutes at a time, and gradually increase the time as your baby gets more comfortable.
Always supervise and never leave your baby unattended when laying your baby down.
Make sure your baby is on a flat, firm surface and not a soft surface like a bed or sofa.
If they need a little more help, use a rolled up blanket or towel to support your baby's chest and shoulders.
Try to make prone time fun! You can put toys or books within reach, sing songs or talk to your baby to get her attention.
Remember, every baby is different, so don't worry if your baby doesn't like to spend time on their face at first. Keep trying and they'll soon discover and strengthen their muscles like a pro!