Pls help - 9wk old HATES tummy time

(21 posts)(18 voices)
  1. My 9 week old DS HATES tummy time and cries and screams from the second we put him down to the second we pick him up… and even then he doesn’t stop since he is so worked up. My DH and I are to blame because we didn’t consistently do tummy time from the start (he had a bris a week after he was born and had a bit of trouble with his umbilical cord stump, so we were waiting for everything to heal). We started doing it around the one month mark, but not nearly as consistently as we should have. We just forgot with everything else to do and when we did do it, he screamed so much we would scoop him right up. Bad (first time) parents. So not surprisingly, at our 2 month appt, the pediatrician told us he had to spend more time on his tummy b/c he could barely lift his head up. He is also a very big baby (17lbs at 2 months), so our pediatrician said it would be that much harder for him to lift his head (as well as to roll over) since he has more mass to lift.

    We have been doing it for a few minutes every day since, but it is just awful. Logically, I know he is simply not used to it and it will soon get better (right?!), he isn’t getting hurt by it and a little crying isn’t going to hurt him… and that it’s probably bothering me a whole lot more than him. That said, has anyone who has been thru this have any advice to maybe make it more bearable for both of us or at least some “my kid also hated it, but now loves it (or at least doesn’t despise it)” success stories? It is the worst part of our day. Thanks!!

  2. Oh dear. I am probably not going to be much help to you BUT I did want to say that both of my DDs absolutely hated hated hated tummy time. Cried until they were close to vomiting. I tried everything to make it bearable for them until I read that babies with either colic or reflux sometimes find lying on their tummies very painful.

    My first DD had very bad colic and my second DD had undiagnosed allergies and both loathed tummy time.

    Now, I admit, I am a total wuss. I would only do tummy time for a very short youngihmiod and, as a result, both of my girls never crawled. My first DD didn't even move at all until she was 17 months and my second DD is now 17 months and is a bumshuffler.

    I was never told to youngihmservere with tummy time with my Paed as he said that the girls clearly didn't like it but in saying that, there was no problem with their neck strength so he wasn't too concerned about that.

    With regards to your DS. I found that if I rolled up a towel and put it under their armpits whilst on their tummy it made it a bit easier for them and I also got down on the ground with them and would try and entertain them as much as possible.

    They also enjoyed tummy time being on my chest whilst I was lying down and they tollerated also being on their tummy on the swiss ball whilst slowly rolling them back and forward.

    Try lying him on your chest or the swissball and see if he can tollerate that for a bit longer Its hard though because you just don't want to see them cry but from a neck strength and crawling youngihmspective, if you can get him to tollerate it for a bit longer each day then it will pay dividends later!

    The very best of luck to you!

  3. My twin boys (16 months now) BOTH hated tummy time. Hated it just like you describe - screaming in hysterics the entire time. I gave up and really never did much of it again since it was torture to them.

    My boys are fine. They learned how to roll over and do the normal baby stuff in due time.

    My pediatrician was not so concerned with the boys when I asked him and he said they should be fine.

    My opinion: don't beat yourself up over it. I did, then I stopped worrying so much. I don't think their lack of tummy time (which was pretty much none) was detrimental to them.

  4. Hmm- well my thoughts- just like with alot of things- is it's good for him, and it is important. Not to say that a baby that doesn't get tummy time from the beginning will have issues.

    I know a mom who has twins and NEVEr put them on the floor on tummy time- well both babies heads are FLAT in the back- because the bones are soft and if in a constant position well- they can flatten out- this can lead to the need for \"helmets\" to be worn to help shape the head right, and for some children they will have a chronically misshapen head \"flat\" in the back- it can be pretty ugly b/c it should't occur.

    I don't know how much she just let them lay on their backs, but obviously alot, or laying in a bouncy, or swing- at 6 months they still weren't sitting up or doing much and i would say this is hugely due to not having them off their backs.

    I would just say- a few minutes several times a day won't kill your baby- so he cries- i PROMISE you will hear alot of crying, grumbling etc as your baby grows about things your ds won't like. But, my attitude, if it's good for him, just gonna have to deal with it.


  5. my son hated it too. i didn't push it. they still develop the skills. Maybe give it a try every day, but i never let him sit there crying.

  6. DD never liked tummytime. I bought her the mats and toys but she had absolutely no interest. I gave up. She is now running like a maniac. I wouldn't worry about lack of tummytime.

  7. goodness, Jenna, don't beat yourself up about this. there is no evidence to show that tummy time does any good at all- really, as your brain matures and myelinates, you develop motor skills. that's going to happen no matter what you do. there are various cultures where they do things like strap babies onto a cradleboard and hang them on the wall for the whole first year. and then they set them free and two days later, they're walking. imo tummy time is a fad. i have 3 kids and i never did one minute of tummy time and they all hold up their heads just fine. one even made it to college despite my serious lack of parenting skills.

    if you want your ds to practice holding his head up, carry him around or get a sling. why torture an infant?

  8. I've found many kids tolerate tummy time much better if placed with their tummies in the center of a stuffed or inflatable doughnut-shaped cushion (with eyes on them at all times, of course).

  9. Ditto pilma's suggestion of a sling if you have concerns about head shape and developing core strength.

    My kids despised tummy time (and I've done this x4 now), so I did as good as none of it. Most of the physical milestones they have hit at or near textbook times in spite of it.

  10. I remember Cincigirl posting on the multiples board that there is some science behind tummy time - it's good for brain development. I was asking the same question because my two also hated tummy time. They tolerate it much better now at almost six months. DS puts his head on the side if tired, while DD still hollers when there is nothing fun to look at. So I have to entertain her.
    We just gave them as much time as they could tolerate - few minutes here and there, with twins it's hard to have both of them screaming like crazy.
    DD loves to sit propped up or stand with support - she is very strong but still not a big fan of tummy time, she can hold her neck very well, but does not roll over.
    I think that every kid is different, we have to respect their signals to some extent.

  11. My dd hated tummy time too so I used to use a boppy pillow to help prop her up both on her back and on her tummy. I still made her do some tummy time though probably not as much as I should have but she has a round head now and she hit all her milestones either on time or early. My suggestion would be to do some but don't push it too much.

  12. Try having your DH put him on his chest for part of the tummy time. The closeness is reassuring and lots of fun can be had for both parties in that position.

  13. DS is 7 weeks and we have been doing very little official tummy time. (didn't lose his cord plug until 4 wks) Dh or I will often recline and put him on our chest. He loves this and has great neck/head control. Dd hated tummy time. We did the towel or boppy thing and also got down on the floor with her. We got in the habit of doing a couple minutes of tummy time after each daytime diayoungihm change.

    Tummy time is a fad but it is because of the whole back to sleep push. Back in the days when babies slept on their tummies there was no need to worry about tummy time because they got lots of it.


  14. Thank you to everyone for your suggestions, encouragement and stories. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it and how much calmer I feel hearing about other tummy time haters who have hit their milestones with no problems.

    I think for the time being we will continue to keep trying for at least a couple of minutes a day and see if there is any improvement, but I am not going to make myself (or DS!) crazy about it. I’ve tried almost every single idea mentioned - with the same awful reaction from my little one - except using the ball. Am going to blow up ours and try it this weekend and will revisit some of the techniques you ladies mentioned since some I only tried one time. Both DH and I have tried lying down with DS on our chests and DS hates it just as much as anything else. But, I think I will try having him lie on us when we are reclining back, not fully lying down and see how that goes. Maybe if it works, we can keep easing backwards a bit. I am not so concerned about DS having a flat head as we do carry him around a lot, sit him up often and have him in varying positions off his back throughout the day. It’s more the development issues - will this affect his ability to crawl, motor development, etc. He is so strong though and can hold his head up on his own when he is being carried or sat up which he’s been able to do for a while now. It's part of why we weren't so concerned about not doing the tummy time, but then the ped said we needed to do more....

    Again, thank you all so very, very much.

  15. Hi- I didn't read the other replies but wanted to let you know that my ds was the same way. I gave up on trying to do tummy time because he got SO upset. At his 4 month appt, ped asked about tummy time and I told him we don't do it at all because ds hated it. Ped said some kids just don't like it and not to worry about it. Ds is 10 months now and he started sitting unsupported at 5.5 months, and crawling just shy of 8 months. He is now standing on his own and cruising around the furniture and I'm guessing he'll be walking within a month. He never did roll over- seriously, he rolled from front to back a few times (to get off of his tummy) and NEVER once from back to front until after he started crawling. Anyway, long story short, he is right on track for his milestones, he just skipped a few I wouldn't worry too much about it- it sounds like he's doing fine. If you're worried about his neck strength, lean back on the sofa/chair and let him lie on your tummy. He'll probably like that more since you're holding him.

    Good luck!


  16. imo tummy time is a fad.

    LOL, spot the old ladies!! We've made the same comment before. Tummy time wasn't invented when my DS was born. He walked before his first birthday and is now a very athletic 12 yo.

    Would agree re sling carrying - both of mine loved it. Unless I was walking a long distance, the stroller didn't get much use.


  17. My DD hated tummy time too... we even went so far as to get her a \"tummy mat\" at Babies 'R' Us... its a little cloth mat with a prop-up pillow for under the arms and a water mat to play with/inspire. Did no good. (lovely waste of $ )

    She did tolerate being on our chests & that was the extent of her tummy time. When she was in NICU they encouraged something called \"Kangaroo Care\" where mom and baby lay chest to chest (unclothed) and the warmth & closeness help with bonding. That is what we did, and it worked well for her.

    To be honest, she did crawl a bit late, but that was more because I (I know, bad mommy move, bad mommy move) encouraged her NOT to crawl because I knew once she was mobile it was all over for me. She crawled at about 8.5-9 months with no tummy time whatsoever (except on our chests).

    I know it's tough to hear DC cry. It wrenches your heart out. For a while, then you get used to it. DH & I were laughing today because he took DD's drink away from her when we were eating and she launched into this waterworks pout and we both just cracked up laughing. Little drama queen.

    All in all, I wouldn't worry too much about the tummy time. I am sure your DS will be fine. Hope things get better for you.

    Take care & blessings~

  18. How often are we to do tummy time each day? My son loves to be on his tummy during his sponge bath. He tries to hold his head up and shoulders. So cute.
    I also bought this mat thing that supports his chest, etc. You can put a little water in the top part that has plastic fish in it for him to look at and feel.

    Cayden 1 month

  19. Here in Germany we have midwives who come to our homes for weeks after the birth and check out the mom and baby and answer questions and give advice. Mine told me to try for one minute of tummy time at a time, at least 10 times a day.

    A friend's midwife told her MUCH longer and more often. But I wouldn't leave a baby crying anywhere. Crying is his way of telling you he's uncomfortable. Try for a minute at a time and lie in front of him, doing what he's doing. Try to distract him for that time.

    Good luck.

  20. don't know what possessed me, but i looked for actual studies of the effect of tummy time on motor development. in a meta-anlysis of well controlled randomized studies, there was a transient delay in gross motor skills for babies who didn't have tummy time, but this disappeared by one year and the tummy time deprived infants walked at the same time as those who had had tummy time.

    most of the studies were surveys of PTs, who thought there were more delays in recent years and attributed those to back to sleep, but that was just their impressions and there were no causative effects shown in those studies.

  21. Again, thank you so much to everyone for sharing their stories and ideas. It has been so helpful and I am sorry I haven’t had time to come back to this thread sooner to respond. pilma - thank you especially for doing the research and posting it!! Based on what you found and the stories of others here, I think we will be just fine if our current “tummy torture” never turns into tolerable tummy time.

    I've tried out more of your suggestions and until today there has been no change. Still 1-3 minutes of intense crying. I skipped it yesterday actually. But, just a few minutes ago I put DS on my chest while reclining rather far back on the couch and he didn’t instantly start crying!!! We had a whole minute of quiet with DS doing an impressive head lift before the hysterics began. Both my DH and I have tried this before with no success, so maybe, hopefully he is getting used to it? I was singing to him this time… maybe he was so distracted by my awful voice it delayed his despair?

    THANKS everyone.

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