Hip Dysplasia- Delayed Milestones?

When Ace came out of his pavlik harness in February, after treatment for hip dysplasia, I was told to be prepared for him to be delayed in meeting his milestones.

He wouldn’t be expected to weightbear for a while, and walking could take longer compared to most. My health visitor even arranged an additional visit at 9-10 months to see how far off he would be from walking, crawling and even rolling.

But of course every child is different, with and without hip dysplasia, and this post isn’t for us mums to sit and compare our little ones progress. I’m purely scribbling down my thoughts to hopefully help another hippy mama feel some positivity after their babes treatment.

Tummy time troubles

As what would be a continued theme, I ignored our consultants advice on banning tummy time. He said it wasn’t important and that he’d be delayed anyway- I couldn’t of disagreed more. After weeks of building up the few minutes a day Ace would stand of tummy time, we were going to give it all up and wait until he had happy hips. That could of been a year or so away for all we knew.

So thanks to the many Facebook support groups, we carried in tummy time, placing Ace on a feeding pillow with lots of soft support for his limbs.

I’m a big believer in tummy time, and often wonder if this the biggest reason why he has progressed the way he has.

Anyway… read on.

Tummy time

Keep rolling, rolling, rolling

Ace was very close to rolling before the harness was fitted, so we were delighted when he began making full use of this new skill a few weeks into harness free life aged 4 and a half months. Although I wasn’t prepared for rolling to be just as troublesome as crawling, I’ll be honest 🙈

Baby rolling

Rolling from back to front first, and often when nobody was looking, it only took a few days for him to master front to back too. Gaining top speed in rolling around the living room within weeks. Much to my horror, finding him lurking metres from where I left him seconds before.

His legs still in the frog legged pavlik position too- maybe this offers more leverage?! Anyway, who cares!

Getting those feet down

It used to baffle me at baby groups spying babies ‘stood’ up straight, parents hands under the arm to keep them steady. I’d do the smile, nod and ask how old they were, hoping they’d be months ahead of Ace. But they never were.

These for me, were the hardest moments, the moments when I could see a hippy baby can differ from their peers. If you picked Ace up he would instinctively raise his knees and feet into the pavlik position. There was certainly no ‘jumping’ when the monkeys jumped on the bed… showing my cheesy mum ‘baby group’ self there 😂

Annoyingly before the pavlik was fitted, he was constantly weightbearing. Pushing those soles into your thighs desperate to stand and see the world, so it just shows you how much the pavlik positioning can change things.

Baby standing

It took until 7 months of age, 3 months harness free for Ace is suddenly straighten his legs and push those tootsies into our thighs again. Even then it’s taken a lot of encouragement to help it continue, and it’s not his favourite thing to do.

At 7 months he stood for the first time, supported by a walker (and us at VERY close range) and now at 9 months he’s definitely enjoying having his feet flat on all fours rather than just on two. He’s getting there, but ready to walk or fully pull himself up? Not for a little well yet.

Baby standing

Good job. My nerves aren’t ready for it 😂

Creeping crawler

Crawling took a while. Legs in the perfect position thanks to the harness, arms ready to commando, he’d move an inch and then roll to his destination. But at bang on 8 months, after weeks of his crawl-roll, we had a full on crawling adventurer.

And I’m not going to downplay this. I was THRILLED. This was a major milestone and one I didn’t think he’d achieve anywhere near the age of a’textbook’ baby.

Baby crawl

Which just proves the point of this post…

Each to their own

Babies do things when they are ready to.

Some walk months and MONTHS before others. Lots will talk, clap, do a wiggly dance months before the others break out with their first babble. But they all get there in the end.

So hip dysplasia or not. Pavlik harness or not. Try not to focus on the phrase ‘Delayed Milestones’ even though that probably seems impossible right now.

They’ll do it when they are ready, and that moment will just be magical. I promise you.

Sian x

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