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Paranoid about 8 month-old's development?

(24 Posts)
Amyellow Fri 16-May-14 14:19:51

Dear all,

My DD has just turned 8 months, and seems to be falling behind all the other babies we know. I never wanted to be 'that mum' that gets obsessive about milestones, but she has already faced a number of challenges (small though full-term at birth, diagnosed with tongue tie at 3mo, bilateral cataracts at 4mo, reflux and failure to thrive at 5mo). Now I don't know if she's a bit delayed because of all that, or whether it's a sign of yet another problem, and I'm terrified of missing something that I should be flagging up.

I'd love to hear about anyone's experiences or thoughts...

She has good head control but can't sit unaided yet - my biggest concern. She mastered rolling some time ago but stopped as soon as she'd got the hang of it. She doesn't reach for objects, but likes to stroke textures if she comes into contact with them. She doesn't mouth anything except her hands, or hold anything. So she can't self feed, and really isn't keen on solids, but will take a few spoonfuls of stage 1 purees. Still no teeth, though seems to have been showing teething signs for months. She loves tickles and kisses, and laughs and smiles at us, and babbles when in a talkative mood. I think she knows her name, and can anticipate familiar games.

Thanks for reading smile

naty1 Fri 16-May-14 17:30:53

Is her sight affected?
My dd loved a vtech spinning top and it encouraged her to sit to play with it. Just lots of practice
Tummy time etc
What was the cause of the cataracts?
Any allergies? Is weaning making the reflux worse

DeputyPecksBentBeak Fri 16-May-14 17:36:55

My dd wasn't sitting up at this age. I think it was partly due to the fact she could crawl so she just wasn't interested in trying to sit still. She was 9mo when she eventually got the hang of it. My HV made an interesting point the other week. She said that longer babies usually take a lot longer to sit up and need more help because they don't have a low centre of gravity like smaller babies! Is your dd long at all?

My dd didn't have teeth until 7/8 months either. My DS isn't 5 months yet and has three! My DNiece didn't have any until she was 14 months shock

Amyellow Fri 16-May-14 18:48:04

naty1 We're still not sure about the cause of the cataracts, she's still having various tests, but yes her sight is affected. We saw a big difference when she got her glasses, but that was only 2 months ago, so she's got lots to catch up on. I think that's why she's not reaching for objects yet, but I did think she'd put more things in her mouth if they were in her hand. At the moment, I have to hold Sophie the giraffe for her so she can gnaw away!
She doesn't seem to have any allergies, and the reflux is under control with medication. But anything thicker than stage 1 purée, she either gags on or spits straight out.

Deputy DD isn't crawling either! She seems content to lie back and chat, or just waving her arms and legs about. She is long though - always grows out of clothes in the legs while they're still baggy round her middle. I'd never heard of that being harder for sitting, but it makes sense!

naty1 Fri 16-May-14 21:49:14

I have congenital cataracts but my sight is unaffected thats why i wondered.
My dd was 75% but sitting at 5.5m (but interestingly short legs very long back)
They are all so different

TeaandHobnobs Fri 16-May-14 22:01:49

DS (born 2 months prem, so was also small and had to catch up) sat at 9m, crawled at 13m, walked at 17m. Fine motor skills only really developed around 13m too. Miles behind most of his peers.
He's now 2, and can do some things others his age can't, and can't do some things others can. You wouldn't have any idea now that he was born early at less than 5lb.
There is a huge range of normal for babies' development. If you are really concerned, speak to your HV, but I'm sure she will get there in her own time smile

happygelfling Fri 16-May-14 23:58:58

My DS is showing an interest in sitting because he wants to see what's going on... (at 4.5 mo he's no where near being able to sit, of course!) Just makes me wonder whether your DD will start to become more interested in sitting now that she has her glasses? Maybe worth trying her in a bumbo to see if she likes the view? (Perhaps with a tray for sophie giraffe or whatever else she might be interested in learning to pick up?) We used a bumbo quite a lot with my DD who was 7wks prem and had to start weaning before she could sit for herself in a high chair.
Games/songs like row, row, row your boat might help too?

chocgalore Sat 17-May-14 05:21:17

Have you seen the GP or HV about your concerns? what did they say? If not, I would arrange an appointment.

you seem to have a gut feeling that something is not quite right - follow it up.

Carsandtrucks Sat 17-May-14 08:18:31

My ds didn't self feed until 10 months and wasn't sitting at 8 months

Carsandtrucks Sat 17-May-14 08:19:13

Get referred to a paediatrician

Frusso Sat 17-May-14 08:26:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WaveorCheer Sat 17-May-14 08:29:18

Given her history, I would ask for a referral if you have concerns. It can only help, even if that 'help' is reassurance there's nothing to worry about!

Amyellow Sat 17-May-14 08:40:22

Thanks everyone for your responses.

We are actually already under two paediatricians (community one for visual/development, acute one for reflux/weight gain) but the next appointment isn't til August (was originally supposed to be this month!) I've lost confidence in the HVs as their advice seems contradictory and slow to act (even when DD had not put on any weight for 2.5 months, they just asked whether I was concerned. I went straight to the GP).

happygelfing DD used to be really interested in sitting up, even before she had her cataract operations and could only see bright lights. From about 4 months she daily stomach crunches, and we could pull her hands to help her sit up fully. Now... I rarely see her try. When she does crunch, if I hold her hands, she'll pull up halfway then fling herself back to horizontal.

I suppose that's why it's bothered me so much that she's not sitting now - she seemed to be well on the way, and it was a comfort to me that she was on track in at least one area.

naty1 Sat 17-May-14 08:50:56

aha - they dont sit themselves (that i have seen) my near 2 cant/wont do a sit up.
You just pose them in sitting position and they tripod their hands . See what happens if she is very unsteady.
So i just used to be holding etc and put down sitting.
It maybe she just doesnt feel like it. Or could it be the reflux still doesnt feel comfy sat with stomach compressed
How is she in highchair/pushchair/car seat etc

Amyellow Sat 17-May-14 09:01:39

Oh yes, I've tried putting her in sitting position - I know she wouldnt be able to sit up by herself yet, I just thought she'd be better at sitting because she was keen and developing muscle strength through all those reps, iyswim.

In a highchair, she leans over to one side, supporting her arm on the edge. Tried a Bumbo, but she always looked really uncomfortable. I now sit her propped up against one of our soft cube seats with a widgey cushion round her front/sides for support. Ive tried gently moving her hands to tripod but she pulls away and arches her back. Yes I have wondered if the reflux is affecting her, she does often prefer to be stretched out rather than curled up.

Arriettyborrower Sat 17-May-14 09:59:07

Has she seen a physio?

MrsWinnibago Sat 17-May-14 14:33:18

I also think you should ask for a referral and perhaps specifically a physio. Speak to the GP about could be just what you say...she's had a lot to deal with and she was small to boot. But you're going to worry and worry if you don't get her seen at the end of the day so it could be worth it for peace of mind.

ikeaismylocal Sat 17-May-14 18:24:13

I wonder if her glasses are giving her too much to look at, maybe she is happy on her back as there isn't so much stimulation and that's what she is used to.

I was told it is good to sit a baby on your knee and giving them as much support as they need to start with,not the baby leaning on yiur body but using your hands to support the baby, then each day move your hands further down her body so she gradually gets used to supporting more and more of her weight. Eventually you can just let them hold your finger for balance and eventually they will let go and be able to sitalone.

I know 2 babies who just were not interested in putting things in their mouth or self feeding, they were ill less often than those who put everything in their mouth!

physiomaz Mon 19-May-14 11:11:43

Hi, you've had lots of good advice already, I just wanted to add that sometimes difficulties like you have described in the early months can mean developmental progress is slightly slower, just while everything else is settling down. If you are anxious an assessment with a physio can be helpful, they would be able to fully assess and monitor your DD's development (there is a wide variation of normal), check if there is anything specific making learning these new skills harder for her and would be able to advice you on activities to practice to encourage your DD's development. You could ask your GP, Health Visitor or paediatrician for a referral to your local NHS services or find a good local private Physio on the CSP (Chartered Society of Physiotherapy)website.

itsnothingoriginal Mon 19-May-14 16:45:56

My DD didn't sit unaided until 9 months and wasn't steady sitting unsupported until 1 yr old or so. She has low muscle tone in her trunk muscles and used to slump over in a bumbo seat or if not properly supported with cushions etc.

Agree that it might be good to ask for physio referral - my DD was seeing physio from 4 months old and made a really big difference to her development. PP makes good sense in saying that she's had a lot to deal with in her 8 short months of life so has perhaps just caused a little delay to her physical development!

Amyellow Wed 04-Jun-14 12:42:32

Thanks so much everyone for your responses. I left a message for the paediatrician explaining my concerns but they didn't get back to me, so I've now made a GP appointment just to get someone to have a look at her.

I've been watching other babies quite closely, and I don't think DD can spread her hips anywhere near as far as they can. She'll move her legs up and down towards her chest, but not out to the side. If I sit her sideways on my lap (so her legs are together, bent at the knees) she seems to be able to hold herself up unaided for a few seconds. Does that make sense, or am I adding 2 and 2 to make 5? Either way I think I'll try to push for a physio referral and get it properly checked out.


choochootrain1 Thu 05-Jun-14 15:27:03


it's a really hard time as there's so much unknown, and I think every parent worries. I worried when my son was so far ahead on something, I thought it meant he was going to have aspergers LOL, and I also worried when he was behind his peers on other things. He's 20 months now...and I still don't "know" everything is/will be okay. But you're doing the right thing in seeking referrals and support.

My DS didn't like new things initially, he's still quite cautious now - it may be that she just doesnt yet really like the sensation of being upright and needs to get more confident in it before trying it out for herself. Have you tried a bumbo? my son hated it, but I think it did get him confident. My son also never put things in his mouth and his version of self feeding was eventually to grab the spoon off me and do it that way. He doesn't like his hands being messy! He's on par and ahead in a few things now developmentally so even though I say I still don't "know" and it's the scary unknown - he seems pretty normal now (and likely your child will be just fine) x

ShoeWhore Thu 05-Jun-14 15:35:36

I think that generally you should follow your instincts and ask someone professional to check if you have concerns - either you're right and they can follow it up or there isn't anything to worry about and you have that reassurance.

The reflux thing is interesting - ds2 had reflux and for a long time if he leaned forward when sitting (even a little bit) he was sick.

I wonder if one of those inflatable nests would be good for her to sit in? She might feel more secure than in a bumbo and you can add a few toys within easy reach. I also used to prop my babies up in the corner of the sofa (staying right next to them of course!) or surrounded by pillows on the bed (again under close supervision!)

Sas1330 Tue 17-Jun-14 02:19:00

Any updates ? My 5 month old isn't reaching either.

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