A baby activity play mat is an essential item every parent should provide for their little ones. Also known as a play gym, it gives your baby a comfortable space to develop various senses and muscle coordination.
They can reach for the hanging toys, roll over, and strengthen their legs and arm muscles.
A play mat also encourages your baby to interact with various stimuli around them. Some babies even learn to crawl and sit up while on their play mats.
Still undecided if you need one? Then read on to know when and how to use a baby activity play mat. This will also tell you how long should the Baby play on activity mats?
What is a Baby Activity Play Mat?
To put it simply, a baby activity play mat is a little gym for your baby. It is designed to stimulate their various senses and encourages them to start developing their muscles by stretching and reaching colorful, dangling toys.
Some play mats have sounds, lights, mirrors, and other components to keep your baby interested.
Play gyms are comfortable and safe. They support your baby as he or she reaches different development milestones. Babies enjoy the various stimuli of baby gyms perfect for productive playtime.
When Will A Baby Enjoy A Play Mat?
You might be wondering, when will a baby enjoy a play mat and when is the best time to start using a baby activity play mat?
Well, as soon as your baby can lay comfortably on its back, you can already introduce a baby gym. A newborn may not seem interested in the toys and different textures on the mat yet; however, it can stimulate a baby’s visual sense.
When your baby starts to roll over for tummy time, that’s when they will start noticing other components of the play gym. This time, you’ll also notice that they become more interested and starts to reach into contrasting colors.
Don’t leave your baby too long at the playmat; a 5-minute session thrice a day is enough for babies 3 months of age and below.
At the age of 4 months, your baby will start being more comfortable with tummy time. They also start rolling over on their own.
At this time, your baby’s interest also starts to increase. The toys are designed to encourage your baby to reach, enabling them to learn sitting up on their own. A playmat also helps your baby to start crawling as he or she stretches to reach various toys and textures.
Top Rated Baby Play Mats
When Baby Outgrows Play Mat?
A baby activity play mat is best for babies to develop their senses and muscle strength. However, the time will come that they will outgrow playing in a little mat.
When your baby reaches 9 months, he or she will start to crawl away from the mat and become more interested in other stimuli outside the play mat.
The toys, the music will eventually bore them as they venture to other things around your home. Never force your baby to stay on the mat if he or she has already outgrown it.
You can add more stimuli such as new toys and activities to keep your baby playing on the mat. Toys with sounds and lights are the perfect addition since they help develop the visual and auditory senses of your child.
What to Look for in a Baby Activity Play Mat
If you are on the market to find a baby activity play mat, here are just a few things to consider if you want your child to get the best one that will suit his or her needs.
- A play mat with vibrant and contrasting colors. If you can’t find one, compensate by adding visually stimulating toys to develop your baby’s visual senses.
- Find a mat with loops so you can easily hang various items such as toys and rattles.
- Washable material. Play mats can easily absorb pee, poop, drool, and sweat. So make sure you find an easy to clean play mat.
A baby activity mat is a helpful tool that develops your baby’s visual and auditory senses. It also helps develop core muscles and strengthens their legs and arms.
However, as with other baby items, always supervise your child during play. Make sure to place it on a flat surface with no raised areas to prevent accidental falling.
If you want your baby to enjoy playing while learning at the same time, a baby activity play mat is the best item to add to your stack.