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For an average parent, the first year of their child’s life seems to be a period of rapid change, that’s why new parents often wonder when should babies crawl. New things are learned almost daily, and parents everywhere complain about how quickly time passes.
In that first year, the baby goes from being unable to focus their eyes to moving themselves around via crawling. Some even skip crawling altogether and start walking.
If you’re wondering when do babies start crawling, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we will outline everything you need to know as parents.
Babies start crawling when they are six months old, and they begin the process of crawling. Before this point, if you place them on their stomachs, they will simply push up with their hands into what is known as the prone position.
However, once they approach that six-month mark, they start moving into what is known as the quadrupled position, where their hands and knees touch the floor.
Although this stage of baby development may last several months, it should be noted that whenever babies start crawling is a natural process. Babies born earlier than their expected due date will often be well on their way to crawling. There is no need to rush or force your child along if they don’t seem interested in crawling right away.
In addition, you shouldn’t feel bad if your baby isn’t crawling at a certain age range because it’s practically normal for them to skip this step altogether. For whatever reason, some babies just aren’t interested in crawling.
Once they begin to crawl, parents will notice several differences between this stage of baby development and all of the previous ones. They are more mobile, move at a faster pace, get into everything, and spend their time learning about the layout of your home.
You should know that during this phase, parents need to watch their children closely because there is a higher risk factor involved with accidents involving crawling children.
They are more prone to fall downstairs or off furniture, which makes the danger of getting injured much greater than before. This means it’s necessary to make sure objects are out of reach and surfaces are clear throughout the house your little one isn’t able to reach.
In addition to this, you should also be aware that a crawling baby can get into a lot of mischiefs.
A crawling baby can get into hard-to-reach places, like under the coffee table and drawers, where you don’t want them putting anything in their mouths. This is not only dangerous, but it can also lead to some serious cleaning up later on.
A crawling baby can make a mess out of your nice tidy living room when they decide to explore the area while “on all fours.” They may even leave smudges or fingerprints on your favorite piece of furniture. This may seem like no big deal; however, if something happens to be spilled or spilled, then these finger marks will become stains that are extremely difficult to remove.
They will find everything from spilled drinks and food to dirty diapers and anything else they can reach. Because of this, it’s important to keep your child secured in a safe spot where they aren’t able to escape until you’ve finished cleaning up the messes they have made.
During this period, parents should not use baby gates as an alternative form of child safety because they are extremely easy for them to crawl over or under. Instead, place them in areas with clear sightlines so if they do happen to attempt escaping, you’ll know right away before any accidents occur.
As newborns, babies will often get on all fours and scoot around on the floor. This is perfectly normal for this age. However, you do need to keep an eye on them in case they are becoming distressed or upset while doing this.
You don’t want your child to get into a position where their airways are blocked due to their face being pressed against the ground while crying because they want something.
- Classic crawl
- Hands and knees
- Bear crawl
- Crab crawl
- Commando crawl
- Belly crawl
When your child reaches the age of one, they will enter another big development stage known as the exploration stage. By this time, children are already well on their way to crawling and are beginning to enjoy getting around more by themselves.
During this phase, parents need to keep in mind that everything in their environment becomes a potential hazard because babies want to touch, grab, hold, and put everything into their mouths. Because of this, parents should be sure to babyproof anything within reach before allowing them to have access again.
During this part of baby development, you can begin encouraging crawling if your child hasn’t started yet. Place your little one down in an area with carpeting so they won’t hurt themselves on the floor when they crawl.
You can also encourage crawling with an object around their size, such as a plastic baby doll or toy, which you can place on the floor in front of them, so they have something to focus their attention on while trying to get around.
Regardless of whether your child has already started crawling or is entering this crawling stage, parents must understand that although there are many dangers, the benefits outweigh the risks.
Even though babies will often bang their heads, scrape their knees, and even fall out of things during this process, every time they push up again, they strengthen muscle and bone growth and development.
This means that getting hurt while learning how to crawl is also helping them grow stronger overall, which is a key ingredient for them to become more independent as they continue to grow.
When Should Babies Crawl?
Crawling is one of the most important developmental milestones because it’s directly related to how quickly children will begin walking and whether or not they’ll eventually talk.
Although some babies skip the crawling phase altogether, experts have determined that they aren’t developed enough cognitively until they reach this age which is why parents need to be aware of this period to guide their children through it effectively with as few problems as possible.
That being said, there isn’t an exact date or time range in which a baby should be crawling around your home. However, experts recommend encouraging movement with different techniques if you notice your child isn’t beginning this process until at least a year old.
What Can Parents Do To Encourage Crawling?
As previously mentioned, the key period when babies first begin crawling is between their first and fourth months, so if after pulling out all the stops you still haven’t seen any movement on behalf of your child, try again two to three months from then.
In addition to this, experts also suggest placing them on a blanket or play mat, which is placed on solid flooring instead of the carpet, which will frequently make it harder for them to crawl around due to traction.
This way, they’ll have more room to spread out their limbs and get comfortable moving around easier without feeling restricted.
Another big benefit that goes hand in hand with encouraging your child to crawl is allowing them access to various movement-based toys and objects, which may aid in their process.
This includes items such as balls you can place on the ground so they have something to reach for, push around, or even just watch as it rolls away from them.
In addition to these things, experts also suggest playing games with your baby during this period. Start by laying down with them on a blanket or mat and then wiggling your fingers across the floor about two feet in front of them.
They will begin crawling towards it may also help encourage this behavior because babies love copying other people, especially those who are close to them.
What Happens When Babies Stop Crawling?
Parents need to understand that their kids learn how to crawl because some develop habits more than others, but often this is because they’ve built enough muscle memory where it’s simply easier for them to move around this way.
This is why if you have a child who takes longer than average to crawl or develops new methods of moving instead. It doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s something wrong with them, as many experts state that crawling does end at some point but what your child chooses to do after will depend on their preference.
However, suppose your child isn’t starting until they’re over one year old and aren’t showing any signs of moving around by the time they reach 18 months. In that case, doctors recommend taking them in for further testing since this may indicate issues with muscle coordination or muscle development which could affect other milestones such as walking.
Although most cases like these are mild and simply require referrals to physical therapy or occupational therapy overall. It’s always better safe than sorry, so you should err on the side of caution regarding some muscular dystrophy issues, characterized by progressive muscle weakness that could worsen over time.
Suppose your child ends up falling into this category. In that case, their pediatrician will likely refer them to a physical therapist who can perform various tests such as those described above to see what progress they’ve made and determine if further treatment would be beneficial for them.
Even though this may sound like something minor overall, it’s important to take any muscle coordination or development problems seriously because these things can become life-long conditions that make daily tasks more difficult than they need to be.
So, Is Crawling Necessary?
Technically speaking, some babies do crawl but may never walk, so being able to roll around on the floor doesn’t necessarily mean your child will go on to be a professional gymnast or anything of that nature.
However, many doctors recommend allowing your children to explore their surroundings as much as possible with whatever method they’re most comfortable with because this makes it easier for them to hone their motor skills and develop muscle coordination.
This means if you have an infant who just prefers rolling over, then let them use that method to get around even though they aren’t crawling since it’s still beneficial for their overall development.
However, you don’t want to limit your child from exploring new ways of moving around either because this can affect their confidence levels and make them less likely to try new things later on.
It’s important that parents who notice their child isn’t crawling give them enough time before they start trying to move by other methods, especially since you don’t want your child to fall or hurt themselves in the process.
Overall, if you have a baby who starts moving with ease, then let them use whatever method they want as long as it doesn’t jeopardize their safety, even if it means skipping out on the crawling stage.
If your infant takes unusually long to begin exploring different types of movement or uses an abnormal method instead, it’s always best to seek professional help.
What Parents Need To Avoid
When they first start crawling, the last thing parents should be doing is sit around and expect their child to know exactly what to do without any guidance.
Just like when they begin walking, you’ll need to be there by their side, guiding them through this process safely and effectively; otherwise, it can quickly turn into a dangerous activity for several reasons.
For starters, parents aren’t only responsible for ensuring their child doesn’t fall down the stairs or get hurt by sharp objects while trying to move around more on their own.
However, there are important things they still need assistance with, such as learning how to properly behave in public without drawing too much attention from strangers who may make inappropriate comments or gestures toward them.
So until your child has mastered the art of crawling, don’t expect them to be able to easily move around without assistance or guidance from a parent, even if it is as simple as keeping an eye on them through the corner of your eyes while you cook dinner.
Crawling doesn’t have much significance past age two because, at this point, they aren’t learning anything new since they’ve already mastered walking and understand the importance of being more independent, which is their next main developmental milestone.
In addition to this, crawling can also pose a problem for taller children who may have longer strides from simply taking too many steps from having been accustomed to using this method of movement for so long.
In conclusion, there isn’t a specific time or date associated on when should babies crawl, but parents mustn’t rush into it because they have to understand that this is just one phase of their development.
And if, after following the advice outlined in this article, you still aren’t seeing any progress, don’t worry about it too much; your child will begin crawling when they are ready.
All Things Childcare strives to provide research-based information. While the contents of this article have been fact-checked, we encourage our readers to seek actual medical advice from health professionals.