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Why Isn’t My Baby Walking?

The walking stage is a huge milestone for every child. It’s an exciting new time when your baby officially becomes a toddler. Most babies learn to walk between 12 and 15 months. A baby isBlog-Walking-Main-Landscape considered delayed in walking once they turn 18 months old. When a child is delayed in a certain gross motor skill, parents are always curious why this delay is happening.

Here are some reasons that your baby may be delayed in walking:

  • Muscle weakness and/or low muscle tone. This is the most common reason. A child who has weakness or low tone in their core and hip muscles may have difficulty with walking. Sometimes this weakness affects the earlier milestones such as crawling, pulling up to stand, and cruising. If your baby had difficulty learning early milestones, they are more likely to have difficulty with walking. A physical therapist can do exercises with your child to strengthen their muscles and help them learn to walk.
  • Orthopedic concerns. This involves the bones and joints in a child’s legs and how they are aligned. An example is hip dysplasia. These concerns are diagnosed by an orthopedic surgeon and are treated in a variety of ways.
  • Neurological concerns. This involves the nerves, muscle fibers, and nervous system of the body. An example is diplegic cerebral palsy. These types of concerns are diagnosed by a neurologist.

Orthopedic and neurologic concerns can be very scary to parents. It is important to understand that a delay in walking does not automatically mean that your child has an orthopedic or neurological disability. If you think your child is delayed in walking, speak to your pediatrician. A pediatric physical therapist can evaluate red flags for causes of delayed walking, as well as help your child to learn this skill.

NSPT offers services in Bucktown, Evanston, Highland Park, Lincolnwood, Glenview, Lake Bluff, Des Plaines, Hinsdale and Milwaukee! If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140.

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Leida Lewis

Leida Lewis

Leida is a physical therapist who earned her doctorate degree from Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & Science in 2011. She also has a master’s degree in Healthcare Administration & Management. Leida completed her clinical work in the school setting as well as at Lurie’s Children’s Hospital. She has a passion for pediatrics, especially infants and toddlers, and considers torticollis and hypotonia her areas of specialty. Leida has volunteered with children on the Autism Spectrum, at Special Olympic events, and at aquatic therapy group exercise classes. Leida is a huge college football and basketball fan – but only roots for the green and white Michigan State Spartans! In her free time, she enjoys running, competing in triathlons, and camping with her family.

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1 reply
  1. americanlamboard.com says:

    Some children don’t walk until they’re 16 or 17 months old, and that’s still perfectly normal. If your baby was a little late learning to roll over and crawl, chances are he’ll need a few extra weeks or months for walking as well.

    Reply

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