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5 month old not grasping toys

(54 Posts)
mumtothreeeeeeeee Sat 28-Jan-12 17:16:10

Just starting to wonder whether I should be concerned about this. DS3 is 5 months old in a few days and still doesn't grasp his toys on his play gym or if I offer a toy to him. If I touch a toy on the back of his hand he will then grasp it and can hold it for a few mins- usually goes straight in his mouth etc. But he doesn't seem to have the motivation to grab things of his own accord . I remember DS1 studying his hands carefully etc. DS3 doesnt do this, he just chews them! He is a very coo-ey chatty baby, seems to call us from the other side of the room etc. If I show him a toy he seems to prefer to look at me rather than the toy. Hmm any thoughts anyone?

ChippingInLovesEasterEggs Sat 28-Jan-12 17:28:38

I wouldn't be yet - I'd keep an eye on it and if it doesn't improve by 6 months then I'd make an appointment with a paediatrician.

Does he spend any time on his tummy?

Does he pass toys from one hand to the other?

Does he hold/fiddle with/grab other things - blankets/bibs/other people's fingers etc?

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sat 28-Jan-12 18:33:45

He spends a bit of time on his tummy, not that much as he is quite possety! But when he does, he's ok with it- lifts his head up and looks around etc. Not rolling but the others never rolled either, well not until a long time after they could sit up.

Definitely doesn't pass toys from one hand to another. If I tap him on the hand with a toy, he will then open his hand and grab it and he will quite often then hold it with the other hand too and then it goes straight in his mouth.

Um, he's certainly not reaching for anything but will grab things by 'accdent' yes, things like his bib or muslin.

sad am worried but feel like I should be more chilled out because he's DC3. maybe I should get the HV to come round and see what she thinks or is that OTT?

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sat 28-Jan-12 20:51:26

Hopeful bump smile

ChippingInLovesEasterEggs Sat 28-Jan-12 21:02:53

I don't think it's OTT - but tbh I don't rate HV at all so what they had to say would mean precious little to me. Of course there are some great HV's (some are even on here! smile ) so if you trust yours then speak to her, but other than that I'd go straight to a Paed.

I think it's unusual for him not to be reaching out for things - but I don't think I'd worry until 6 months but if you are already worried then you need to get some reassurance from somewhere.

You could try asking on a parenting website.


It's more about housework, drinking & sex at the weekends - keep bumping and someone who isn't drunk might turn up!!

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sat 28-Jan-12 21:53:54

No, I don't really have faith in the HV tbh! It's a team of HV's so it would be pot luck who I got I guess. How would I go straight to a paed? Surely I'd need a GP referral? I have got a few anxiety issues at the mo, which I went to the GP about. So I reckon they might dismiss me (they won't know when babies are supposed to do certain things will they?) and put it down to anxiety. Hmm, wish he'd just catch on to what hands are all about lol! He's such a lovely responsive thing that my gut feeling is he's fine but this is getting to me a bit confused.

Jokat Sat 28-Jan-12 22:23:06

Hi, I think there's no harm in talking to a hv about it if you're worried. When my dd1 failed to crawl and sit, it was the hv when I took her to get weighed who picked up on that and she arranged an appointment with a paediatrician. So you wouldn't need a referral from your GP. Dd1 turned out to have spastic diplegia (she was 11 weeks early) so I'd always encourage parents to get things checked if they are worried. In the unlikely case that something IS wrong, you want to have got the ball rolling a.s.a.p. as waiting lists for services like physiotherapy tend to be very long.

ChippingInLovesEasterEggs Sat 28-Jan-12 22:24:47

If you want a free appointment you would need to go through your GP - but there's no way your GP will give you a Paed referral for this, not at your DS's age. I still think you should wait at least a month before doing anything, but I do understand that it's hard to do that, especially if you are suffering from anxiety anyway. I really do think it's your anxiety clouding your judgement here - but most of the time we can't help worrying can we. If he's lovely & responsive in other ways, are you sure you need to be concerned about this yet? He's only a few weeks old after all.

Jokat Sat 28-Jan-12 22:59:28

We got a free appointment and didn't see our GP. Anyway, I don't want to scare you at all, there's probably nothing wrong with your lo at all, I just wanted to let you know there's nothing wrong with doublechecking anything you're worried about imo and we were sent on the path of diagnosis and treatment without the involvement of our GP. We live in London, maybe these things differ from county to county.

daytoday Sun 29-Jan-12 09:17:12

At 5 months was DS3 was exactly the same as yours. She would lie quietly, passively and happily. There is much noise from the others that she has more of a 'show' going on around her. Nowhere near sitting up at 5 months. Still newborn like, rather than 'baby' like.

I was a little worried. But the developmental changes kicked in around 5.5 months and its been fast and furious since then - by 7 months was sitting up unaided, handling toys, rolling over, leaning forward as if to crawl, grabbing whatever you are holding. All lovely.

I would encourage her, and take a raincheck at 6 months.

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sun 29-Jan-12 09:23:17

Thank you both of yousmile. Have had a bit of a sleepless night about this, I know that is ridiculous but I do think it's odd. Tbh he doesn't even bat toys unless by accident. He LOVES looking at them, very stimulated but his arms are either by his side or in his mouth, unless I help him hold the toy. He has just been in his bouncy chair with toys dangling. Likes looking at them but as soon as there's any human action in the room he wants to watch that or coo to get our attention.

I might start by talking to the HV. I just feel they'll be slightly more clued in to when babies are supposed to do things than a GP would.

Would really welcome any other thoughts on this too smile

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sun 29-Jan-12 09:30:24

Thank you day today- I do feel this baby has had a totally different babyhood to the others! Lots of great stuff to watch, older children playing with him which he loves etc etc. DH don't remember the older 2 doing the conversation thing that DC3 seems to do so he is more advanced than them there. He is getting there with sitting up, probably on a par with the others.

I hope things kick in soon like you say, good to hear about your DD smile

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sun 29-Jan-12 09:31:49

Argh - DH * and I* don't remember

nailbitingfinish Sun 29-Jan-12 09:36:27

GPs do (or should!) know this sort of thing. They do paeds training as part of their GP training & half the job is mums & babies. I wouldn't feel like that's not an option.

Fwiw, I thought my dc2 was a bit slow, posted on Mn, & the next day she did whatever it was...

daytoday Sun 29-Jan-12 09:59:26

I def have had more anxiety this time round and many sleepiness nights worrying. Went to health visitor at 5 months with dc3. This did help reassure me.

Do you have one of those inflatable dounut things? That really helped.

daytoday Sun 29-Jan-12 10:02:26

Also, my DD went quite when she started sitting up. So maybe your chap is perfecting the art of language first?

LetsKateWin Sun 29-Jan-12 10:02:38

I would speak to your HV if you're worried. My HV referred my DD to a paed and physio without any involvement from the GP, and it was free. THis was in London too, so may be different in other areas.

DD was on a waiting list for the maximum waiting time (18 weeks I think) so it's worth starting the ball rolling early.

Hopefully DS3 will be fine by the time he's 6 months. DD seemed to be slightly behind all the other NCT babies in the group for lots of things (other than chattiness) but she soon caught up.

Littlefish Sun 29-Jan-12 10:04:05

Dd used to bat at things, but never grabbed them as her thumbs were completely tucked behind her fingers, in a fist, until she was about 8 or 9 months old. I used to open her fingers and put things in her hand and she would then hold them quite happily. The HV referred us to the GP, who in turn referred us to the paediatrician. They did x rays and checked her muscle tone. It turned out to be just one of those things, and righted itself after she was about a year. It's still her default hand position whe she's relaxed and watching tv.

I would go and see your GP rather than HV if you are concerned.

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sun 29-Jan-12 10:16:34

Can I come and see one of your GP's? grin Out of the 4 at our surgery, 1 would be definitely clueless and another may just put it down to the anxiety I spoke to him about a couple of weeks ago. I am now anxious about this but it is a real concern, not just a symptom of general anxiety which he might say. So I may phone tomorrow and see which gp is working and if not the 'right' one will phone the HV. Need to deal with this tomorrow sad. God I thought I'd be so relaxed with a DC3! And I have been pretty good up until this point!

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sun 29-Jan-12 11:41:09

Does anyone have any ideas for the best way to encourage DS? Currently lying blissfully happy under play gym, occasionally flicking toys by accident. Should I lie him just on the floor and try to show him his hands or continue to try to get him to hold toys?

Jokat Sun 29-Jan-12 13:59:02

How about giving him hand massages? This might help him become more aware of them and make him realize they are part of him and he can do stuff with them. Just an idea...

Jokat Sun 29-Jan-12 14:01:08

So I'd do both, show him and play with his hands and also get him to hold toys.

mumtothreeeeeeeee Sun 29-Jan-12 15:16:48

Thank you, DH is trying hard with him at the moment whilst I am just feeling sad and worried sad. Amazing how this issue has bought me down so quickly. I have had a good couple of weeks but think I have some PND since DS' birth- not had it with the other 2 DC. Double GP appointment tomorrow I think. sad

Jokat Sun 29-Jan-12 16:40:28

Please don't be upset by it. He sounds like a happy and content baby, that's the most important thing. You've noticed something slightly unusual and are oing to do something about it, so you're doing right by him and don't need to feel bad. If something can be done to help him with the development of his fine motor skills, the relevant process will get started off by hv or GP. If it turns out to be nothing you'll be glad you've addressed it and put your mind at rest. Either way, you will have done your job as his mother and the most important thing is that he is happy and feels loved. You sound like a wonderful and very caring mother. Just focus on and enjoy the things he CAN do (and say, he sounds like a right old chatterbox!) and if does need a bit of extra help, he'll get it and he'll be fine! x

daytoday Sun 29-Jan-12 17:24:50

I also am amazed that I am less chilled out at DC3.

We also pretty much left DC3 to chill out in background and at 5 months we thought 'shit!' why is she so chilled - it was like we suddenly noticed everything she wasn't doing.

We suddenly started playing with her more and she really really benefitted and suddenly after 6 months I started to relax.

best bit of advice a friend gave was look at what she CAN do - you'll be amazed.

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