Monday, June 25, 2012

Ask Dr. Momsie: Crawling

One of my readers recently asked,
"My 6 month old just started scooting backwards to get around. Will she eventually change gears?"
I really wanted to post this question, because I remember being a little concerned about Jr.'s crawling progress.  I can relate to my reader's anxious anticipation! At six months, Jr. was trying to walk, but wasn't even interested in crawling.  Then, he began to scootch along on his tummy, but wouldn't attempt to lift his belly off the floor.  Even knowing that his development was normal, I wondered if he would ever just pick that belly up and go!

So, dear reader, if your little lady hasn't started crawling already, let me reassure you. She probably will be soon!  Most babies do start to crawl by seven to ten months.  But, official "crawling" doesn't necessarily mean the hands and knees type of crawl we all think of.  An "army crawl" (using elbows), a scootchy crawl, a one arm or leg pull, and many other types of movement are considered crawling.  Even the backwards scootch you explain is considered a crawl.  The important thing is that your baby is interested in moving and going, regardless of how she does it!

Some babies (my hubby and I, for example) actually walk before they crawl.  There are some that would say this has a negative impact on development, but I believe that opinion is quackery!  Many pediatricians don't even ask about crawling development, because it is not considered an important developmental milestone; the manifestation of crawling behavior does not reliably determine which babies are developmentally delayed.

Now, if your baby turns one and is still not moving his arms and legs in coordinated movement, isn't interested in moving about and exploring, or favors one arm or leg more than the other, then you should talk to your pediatrician.  More than likely, your baby will be mobile and exploring every nook and cranny of your house soon.  Get that house baby-proofed!

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