|Although my baby is nearly 3 months old, he still does not
have a very strong neck. What can I do to help him get stronger
Babies are born with very weak necks, and during the first
few months need to be handled very carefully. Their necks
should be supported at all times. Make sure that when you
let someone hold your baby, that you show them how to support
the baby’s head. This might not be obvious to a person
who is unfamiliar with babies.
The necks of babies get stronger mainly because they are
curious about the world around them. They look around when
they hear a noise, or watch something go past so they have
to turn their heads. It is a slow and gentle process of
Gaining neck strength is an important skill and you have
realised. By three months most babies have enough strength
to hold their heads steady. It is possible that you are
supporting the baby’s head too much at this stage.
These are some ideas that will help your baby’s neck
tummy time is a vital component of muscle strengthening
for your baby in general. Keep these sessions short
especially if baby does not enjoy being on his tummy.
Use a rattle or other appealing toy to encourage him
to lift his head and look. Make a game of it.
- If you sit
baby on your lap in front of a mirror and then play
a rocking game, he will have fun and automatically
try to hold his head steady.
- Cheek tickling encourages baby
to turn his head.
- Once baby has some neck strength,
gently pull him up to sitting form lying, holding
his elbows. Until you are sure he is strong enough,
you may ask your partner to support his neck a little
and make sure he is not straining or that his neck
does not tend to flop.
- If your partner holds baby face down across his arms,
you can call him and encourage him to look up at you.
Make sure that all these activities are fun, and that you
stop as soon as baby shows signs of tiredness. Once his
neck starts to strengthen, he will use it more and more,
and so the strength builds naturally and quickly.
If you are still concerned, you should discuss this with
your clinic nurse or your doctor at your next appointment.
Head - banging