Baby Not Reaching for Toys at 4 Months

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Your infant should start reaching for objects around the fifth month of its life. But remember this is not strict!

Some babies can do this at an earlier stage, even around the third month. Parents can notice that babies are reaching for certain objects, toys, and even their mama and dada. 

So, a baby not reaching for toys at 4 months is not an unusual thing. Each baby has a different pace, and it’s okay not to reach for things until they are 5 months old.

Some babies, especially those who were born prematurely or have a growth restriction, might not reach for toys until they reach the 8th month of life! An early goal of a toy you can give your child to start is to hold on your finger and show your child how the toy moves. 

Introducing textures and shapes is another great way to encourage tactile play skills in infants, but it’s important not to overwhelm them with too many objects at once. You can also use a spoon as opposed to a fork as they are easier for babies to pick up with their hands.

Babies are very different from one another, but typically babies will start developing their hand-eye coordination around 4 months of age. A baby’s hand is not developed enough to perform movements with the same strength as their arms or legs. 

So, at this stage, they use their hands more to explore sounds and sensations rather than for playing with objects deliberately. Sometimes babies even hump things to express themselves.

Often it can be hard to tell if a baby is intentionally reaching out for a toy or just randomly batting it away. 

If your baby seems uninterested in grabbing toys near them, offer them different types of toys that you think might be interesting closer to the palm of your hand where they can easily grab them.

Should a 4-month-old be able to grab toys?

At this stage, babies are able to grab bigger objects. But when it comes to the small ones, they still don’t have the developed coordination to do so. 4-months old babies can easily grab blocks and other large objects but certainly cannot grab things like beans.

Roughly 95% of 4-month-olds can grab big toys. Babies at this age are mastering the gross motor skills necessary for reaching out and grabbing things, which they will continue to develop in the months ahead. This is an important milestone in physical development, so make sure to encourage it!

If your baby can’t move any of his or her limbs on their own or ask your doctor whether there is a medical condition that needs attention.

Why is my 4 month old not reaching for things?

Many parents worry when the baby not reaching for toys at 4 months. But many babies can naturally hesitate when it comes to reaching for things. Just like adults can be shy and more introverted, so can babies. But, maybe the object was not even interesting enough for a toddler to preoccupy its mind to go for it and grab it. 

Some babies are born with a natural reach, while others need assistance to start grasping. Just like stated above. It’s likely that your 4-month-old infant may be one of those who needs a little assistance, and that’s okay! 

These infants usually need help building their hand strength. Sometimes they’re going through a growth spurt and don’t have the coordination to grasp objects without further assistance.

They may also be at risk for developmental delays or other health problems that can lead to muscle weakness or limited reach.

If you are worried, the best thing to do is to go and visit a healthcare provider and get a professional opinion.

When should babies start grabbing things?

Babies start grabbing things from the day they were born. To be precise, grabbing things is a natural and basic reflex when a baby is born. So, by the time the toddler is 4 months old, they should reach for certain things freely.

They will usually do this with larger objects while grabbing things with both hands. But as mentioned above, this can vary, and your baby might even reach for an object even at the earliest stages.  

This is a very common question parents ask themselves, and why does their baby not reaching for toys at 4 months. And for most, it’s a difficult question with no right answer. But, typically babies first start grabbing things at around 4-6 months of age when they first start using their hands more flexibly. 

What do I do if my baby isn’t reaching a milestone?

Parents know their babies the best, and if you are unsure if the baby is developing at the “right” time, the best thing you can do is seek a professional opinion.

This also refers to their motoric, speaking, learning, and acting skills as well, so share your concerns with a doctor and make sure everything is in the right order.

During the first six months of your baby’s life, it will be rolling and cruising around. As they get a little older, you might notice that they aren’t able to sit up or roll over yet.

These milestones may come quickly or slowly, but there are some things parents can do to help their babies reach these milestones at their own pace.

If your baby isn’t reaching a milestone, make them as comfortable as possible and try not to force anything. Babies don’t like sudden changes.

Not every child reaches milestones at the same time, or even in the same order. This is to be expected and should not worry you. Some kids don’t learn how to crawl until they’re 18 months old and still others take their first steps at two-and-a-half years old.

All children are different, so it’s important not to compare your baby with other toddlers. Be patient and keep offering them opportunities for new skills such as playing on a play mat or high chair where they can practice reaching for objects with their hands and feet. So, a baby not reaching for toys at 4 months is not a thing for concern. 


It’s a natural instinct to react in a certain way when it comes to the development of your newborn. Parents tend to compare their toddlers to other kids and follow set patterns. If the baby does not follow those templates, concerns show up.

A baby not reaching for toys at 4 months, is not an issue. Parents need to remember that each child has its own pace and no child has the same exact development time. If this happens to your baby, don’t worry.

You can support your baby’s growth by paying attention to their likes and dislikes, helping them with developing their skills, and assist them in exploring the world around them.

The baby has a natural reflex for grabbing things from the minute they were born. But the exact time on when they will start grabbing really relies on the child and its development pace.

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