Newborn Leg Shaking – Is This Serious?

Newborn Leg Shaking – Is This Serious?

You glance up and see your child’s legs shaking? This is a weird thing to see as parents. But newborn leg shaking is not a serious issue for infants. There are many reasons why your child’s leg may be shaking, it is due to reasons that are normal for developing babies, such as an undeveloped nervous system, or perhaps a small amount of caffeine in the mother’s breast milk.

We’ll tell you there is no reason to worry about your child’s tendency to shake his legs. In this article, we’ll discuss what a baby’s leg shaking signs are and what you should be concerned about. We will also discuss the common infant leg shaking causes and the best way to recognize when it is abnormal.

Why does my baby’s leg shake?

The baby’s leg shake may occur due to a variety of reasons. There are many reasons why the Moro reflex, commonly referred to as the “startle reaction” can occur in your infant and most newborns have leg shake. It generally disappears on its own after some months.

A more serious condition that could be a serious issue, such as cerebral palsy or a seizure-related disorder may be present if your baby’s leg shaking is intense or continues for a long time. 

Although infant leg shaking is not something to be worried about, it is advisable to talk to your pediatrician if you are concerned about anything.

Nervous System Immature

A second shaking during sleep can trigger an infected nervous system. Babies’ bodies grow after their birth inside and out. 

Every movement babies make the brain and body are constantly learning, adapting and expanding. When these signals travel across the spinal cord, and then to different areas that comprise the human body get more precise with time.

Startle Reflex 

Moro Reflex occurs when a newborn suddenly begins to shake their legs or arms. It happens when external circumstances surprise your infant. When more happens to them, they are always on guard, but it’s not on purpose.

Infants with Moro will get over it because their reflexes are more controlled. In the meantime, you may observe your child voluntarily arch the back of their head for a short period of time then move their hands and fingers and extend to the maximum extent possible using their legs and arms.

The baby is a bit shocked and it appears they’re in need of being hugged after having done leg shaking. The eyes of some babies expand as they backward arch because of this is also the case.

It’s nothing you need to be concerned about when you’re a new parent and it is usually between 3 and 6 months old.

Mucous Myoclonus While Asleep

This can be caused by reflex responses in the body, or when an external noise disrupts their sleep, causing the baby’s leg shakes, and then awakens.

While they’ll still feel sleepy after they get up and fall asleep, they’ll most likely go to sleep following this. Sleep Myoclonus is also known as the nocturnal myoclonus.

Everyday activities within the vicinity of your soon to be sleeping infant may trigger this type of reaction, such as when you turn on or off a light. This is a natural reaction of your infant while he or she is drifting asleep.

Your Baby Is Ready To Eat

If your baby’s leg shakes when stretching, even after they’ve been crying to eat, it’s most likely due to your baby’s needing food and not being able to hold back the overwhelming emotions that are happening in their body.

As parents, there are times when we need to make it through the final block of the drive until we can get our child away to feed it. Babies don’t understand this and could be frightened in the event that they’ve exhausted their patience.

They’re overwhelmed by their emotional turmoil, hunger and stomach pains and they are unable to get their way and their bodies shake, twitch, or shake.

Another significant aspect of this kind of newborn leg shaking while stretching is the fact that blood sugar levels can contribute to it. This isn’t a great feeling, especially for a tiny human that has to keep up with the growth of their body rapidly.

If this happens after feeding your child or sometimes after having eaten, talk about the issue to your pediatrician to receive an informed assessment.


Infant colic is typically seen at a young age of 3 weeks from 3-4 months. The signs of colic can include flailing legs or arms, and an arched back, and legs that are folded towards the abdominal region.

Sometimes, parents think that this is shaking. Do not worry, colic isn’t a disease in and of itself, and will disappear in its own time.

Signs that newborn leg Shaking is Abnormal

In the most extreme instances, the newborn’s leg tremors can occur when a baby suffers from seizures. The intensity of the shaking is the major distinction between twitching and typical tremors.

The baby’s leg shaking while you squeeze is more like a muscle moving with blinking eyes or, in certain cases sucking.

Take note of these other signs that your infant is having seizures.

  • Babies don’t cry when taking a picture.
  • The newborn leg shaking or twitching movements are similar throughout each episode.
  • The episodes can occur when the child is still, for example in bed, or without triggers.
  • The baby’s expressions on his face, breathing and heart rate are not as normal.
  • The repeated movements don’t end or alter when you contact the baby.
  • One side is different from the other or both sides respond simultaneously.
  • Signs like mouth sucking or blinking of the eyes are also evident.

If you observe any of these symptoms, there could be a problem and should seek help.

While symptoms are not common, the newborn leg tremors could suggest that your baby is deficient in Vitamin D, which is often the case and can be treated.

The pediatrician will determine whether that’s the situation. Insufficient Vitamin D levels can also be possible to treat with supplements.

Final thought

The first time parents notice an unusual newborn leg shaking in their child’s sleep, they panic and wonder what could cause it. Most of the time the baby’s leg shakes when asleep is harmless and does not require medical care. However, in some unlucky instances, the condition may require medical treatment.

One of the most crucial things to understand is that there’s no need to be worried. It doesn’t matter if it’s due to typical developmental progression or an illness that is physical, there are methods to tackle the issue and ensure that your child sleeps comfortably through the night.


Is it normal for a baby’s leg to shake?

Yes, it’s normal for a newborn’s leg to shake. It is typically because they are still learning to control their movements and coordinate.

As they age, their muscles will grow larger and better coordinated and shaking will cease. If you’re concerned about your newborn leg shaking, you should consult your pediatrician.

Can you explain why a baby shakes its leg like a dog? 

The baby could be unwell or hungry. The trembling that ceases after eating or repositioning shouldn’t be a cause for concern. Baby might tell you it’s dirty, wet, or gassy. You might need to look at the diaper.

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