From the moment your baby enters the world, you’ll realize that your life with them is a series of baby milestones — one giving way to another until, well, your little one is all grown (at which point, let’s be real, they’ll still be your baby). It’s a beautiful succession and one that moves far too fast, so it makes sense that you’re already looking forward to celebrating the next big accomplishment on your little one’s developmental list. If you’ve got an infant, that means you’re probably asking, “When do babies roll over?”
Ah, yes… baby’s first “step” toward mobility. Sure, there will be other major moments between here and your baby’s actual first steps. They’ll sit up, start to crawl, pull themselves up, cruise, and eventually, be running all over the house. But before any of that happens, your baby will roll over. So, here’s what to expect once they hit this rolly polly milestone.
Can a 2-month-old baby roll over? A 3-month-old baby?
While it may not be entirely unheard of for a 2-year-old to routinely roll over, it’s probably not what you’d call the norm. However, some babies do learn to roll over as early as 3 or 4 months old. Since every baby is different, it’s impossible to say for sure how old your little one will be when they discover this fun new talent.
What we can say for sure is that babies often catch their parents by surprise when they roll over for the first time. That means it’s especially important not to leave baby unattended. You certainly wouldn’t want your little chicken nugget to roll right off of the changing table or find themselves in some other precarious situation due to an ill-timed roll. The last thing you want to hear when you turn your back to grab a diaper is “ker-thump!” as your baby flops onto the floor.
Although rest assured, Mama, this has happened to the best of us… baby is usually fine as long as the fall isn’t from a super-high distance. It’s always best to call their pediatrician just to touch base if you do have an unfortunate roll-over accident, but try not to make yourself too anxious about this possibility. As an extra precaution, you can always make sure to place a soft “landing” area around your little one whenever they’re on an elevated surface.
Can a baby roll over too early?
There’s no rule saying a baby can roll over too early. In fact, some newborns do actually roll onto one side to sleep with the first few days after delivery. Interestingly, though, this premature ability typically fades with the first month. If that turns out to be the case, baby will likely start independently rolling over again around the average: 3 to 4 months old.
When do babies roll over from belly to back?
And, for that matter, when do babies roll over from back to front? Well, that depends on when your baby rolls over for the first time. As for a general frame of reference, baby will usually roll from belly to back first — it requires less coordination and muscular strength. They’ll typically learn to roll from back to front around a month or two later.
When are babies adept at rolling over?
Many 4-month-olds manage to master rolling over. And by 6 months old, most babies can roll front-to-back, back-to-front, and pretty much all over the room.
How can you help encourage baby to roll over?
If you want to make sure your baby is on the right track to become a little rolly polly, make sure they get plenty of tummy time. This will help build up those oh-so-important muscles in their arms, back, and neck that are needed for pushing. Also, as long as you’re supervising, you can place a blanket or toy on the floor to one side near your nugget so they’ll be tempted to reach out with their arms.
One excellent motivator? An activity mat! With so many things that make noise, move, and generally beg for baby to touch them, an activity mat just outside of baby’s reach could inspire them to move more. And that movement can facilitate baby’s first roll-over.
How far after rolling over does crawling occur?
Once your baby starts rolling over, you’ll begin bracing yourself for what you probably assume is the inevitable next milestone: crawling. And, to be honest, you’re not wrong to go on a babyproofing spree. At around six months old, you may notice your little one rocking themselves back and forth on their hands and knees. By nine months, you could have a full-blown crawler in the house.