My son rocks while sitting all the time except when his hands are busy or when he is sitting on the couch/high chair/ on someone's lap. He is also fine when he is sitting on the floor. He seems to like the sensation of the back of his head hitting something too. He is 7 months old and smiles at people all the time, initiates communication, babbles a lot, plays peek-a-boo, makes eye contact, anticipates, understands some words, likes playing with different toys and objects, protests, reaches, loves looking at books and loves food. I can't understand why he rocks so much. Any ideas? And how can I get him to stop?
Two things, unless you are given something to worry about----- don't worry. Rocking in itself isn't a problem, is it? Do you rock him in a rocking chair a lot? It is very soothing.
Secondly, if he is rocking on purpose to soothe himself (or if he did have autism, which he most likely does not)----- it would be inappropriate to stop it. My son DOES have a developmental delay called sensory integration disorder. He used to spin like crazy as a 2, 3 and 4 year old. At first, I thought it was so cute. Then we realized he had a delay and his spinning was part of that and I felt upset that he did it as I didn't want anything to be wrong with him. Then I realized that his spinning was a self soothing technique and something that his nervous system craved. So I turned on music and had spinning sessions for him called "dancing". The more I did this, the less likely he was to do it in public. So kids that have these quirks----- it would go against helping them to try to make them stop.
Lastly, okay---- I'm a grown up in my 40's now. Educated, well adjusted (I think Lol), mother, wife . . . etc. Guess what I do when I'm not paying attention and I am sitting on the floor? I kind of rock back and forth. I'm a psychologist and I was doing it at work one time and a colleage watched me. She said----- I bet you had a nurturing mom that rocked you all the time (which I did). I said yeah, why? She said because you rock yourself. And I do. Whatever . . . I think she was the only person that has ever said anything to me as it isn't a big deal. I also rub my feet together when I'm getting ready to go to sleep----- every night. My husband is the one that pointed that out to me. Weird . . . but a carry over from ways I soothed myself as a kid. Everyone has them . . . so try not to worry about what sounds like a happy, normal baby rocking a bit. Good luck.
I've actually been wondering if it's a sensory integration issue. I have spoken to a couple of OT's who gave me some things to work on. But I'm considering getting him evaluated anyway. It would be fabulous if he does it because it's fun and soothing, but if it translates later into learning issues I will only blame myself for not doing anything about it. I'm an SLP so I am aware of the many different issues children can be faced with. It's just a little different when you are a first time mom and everyone tells you he'll grow out of it and you're not sure because you've never spent this much time with a baby but your profession also makes you very in tune to behaviors both subtle and obvious. I guess the best thing to do is trust your gut instinct and be proactive. Thank you so much for taking the time to respond.
Well, good luck. Sensory integration, I think, I hard to do much therapy with until they are a bit older. My son was 3 when we started. Anyway, rocking and spinning are also a normal things kids do . . . just don't try to stop it was my main point. Good luck,
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