My baby does not roll (5 month old). Should I be concerned? What can I do?
Congrats on your little cherub turning 5 months old. And thank you for your question.
At 5 months old many babies are only on the verge of starting to roll over. Although of course many have turned over at least once too – which tends to make us parents a bit inpatient - me too.
In general, if your baby is alert and interested in his/her environment, wriggels about and wants to explore, (s)he'll learn to roll soon. By 8 to 9 months most babies will know how to roll. Sometimes it helps to focus less on the milestone itself (or worry about) and instead make it a point to really enjoy the way there. I found this to be a crucial principle for all sorts of challenges from rolling over to toilet training, learning to read and beyond.
So here are 3 little things for rolling fun:
1. Provide a soft(er) surface for your baby who’s trying to roll already.
The mattress and doona/duvet of our bed did wonders for my kids, cushioning their heads as they rolled onto their back and giving less resistance to elbows in the way. (Of course you won’t leave your baby there practicing all alone ;)
2. Have a dance with your baby (or two)
To roll over, babies need to use an lot of muscles in a very coordinated way. They’ll also change their orientation in space, often for the first time themselves. You can help your little one train those muscles and become familiar and comfortable with twirling around by leaning forwards and backwards and sideways and all over the place while giving him (or her) a wonderful hug. – All the more fun with some music around. If you carry your baby in a sling or carrier, (s)he would get this kind of exercise already too.
3. Use toys to challenge your baby,
to stretch, to bend, to move her/his head and maybe also to put the whole sequence together.
The video above illustrates the whole process so beautifully. Now, it shows the rolling from back to front, which is usually the harder skill to learn. But it also shows a lot of little movements that go into the whole process. Many of those movements are so small that they get overlooked as what they are too, great achievements on the way to reach a big milestone and, above all: fun things to do – just because.