Have you ever heard of tummy time for babies? Tummy time is a specific time that you lay your baby lay on her tummy. It’s an easy way to encourage your baby to explore her world, get moving and enjoy babydom.
Tummy time is also a fun break for most babies to see the world in a different position. The majority of babies spend most of their early days on their backs, so planning tummy time into your baby’s day is a welcomed change (After they get over the initial “whoa this is new” reaction.)
An infant should never be left unattended during tummy time if she does not have complete head control. Stay close by, fold some laundry, check your email or whatever items you need to check off your busy mom list — but do not leave your baby unattended.
Since tummy time has so many benefits to your baby’s developmental processes, (like learning how to move, sensory learning, and also developing a properly shaped head) you’ll want to squeeze it in several homes throughout the day. But no one will look forward to those essential tummy times if your baby is cranky! Happy babies equal happy moms, right? So here are some tiparoonies to keep your baby happy-happy so you can both enjoy this important time — every day!
How to Keep Your Baby Happy During Tummy Time
- Choose the best time of day. Babies are normally more fussy when they are sleepy, overstimulated or hungry. Avoid choosing those times as tummy time. About 15 minutes after a feeding is a perfect time for tummy time. After your baby has eaten, burped and had some time to digest her meal, she is now ready for adventure in tummy land! Laying her on her tummy too soon after a meal can lead to yucky spit-up episodes. You know how long it takes your baby to be “spill-proof,” so go with that knowledge. Waiting 15 minutes after eating and burping is just general advice.
- Kick off the socks. Some infants enjoy feeling the floor or play mat under their feet. They also enjoy gaining traction with their toes. So kick off the socks and let’s see those chubby toes!
- Distract! Since tummy time is a new position for most infants, try to make this transition go more smoothly by bringing in distractions. Play peek-a-boo, sing, and talk to your little one. Bring in the baby’s older sibling to talk and play with her as well.
- Purchase the goods. Tummy time mats or gyms are designed to engage little ones during tummy time. Water-filled balls, mirrors and special sounds are only a few fun things to grab your little one’s interest.
- Take baby steps. Change is not everyone’s favorite past time. If your little one cries in protest, coax her to spend a few more minutes on her tummy. You can gradually lengthen tummy time as your infant adjusts to this new position.
- Squeeze it in. If you are extremely rushed and maxed out on time, try getting tummy time in during daily activities. For instance, after a diaper change briefly turn your baby on her tummy while she is on the changing table. Also, after changing her clothes, briefly lay her on her belly. Take opportunities to put her on her belly throughout the day, even if it isn’t a routine tummy time.
Is tummy time important in your home? What fun ideas have you tried during tummy time? Share those ideas with us on social media!
*Affiliate links have been added to help you make tummy time happy!*