Your baby's first milestones

Your baby's first milestones

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  • Your baby's first milestones

    There are so many exciting moments in your baby's first year! It seems like every day brings an amazing new feat. Take a peek at some of the big milestones to expect before your baby takes her first teetering steps toward toddlerhood.

    (Keep in mind that all babies develop at their own pace.)

  • Smiles

    Few parents forget the delight of their baby's first toothless grin. The first smile may appear as early as 6 weeks, but it's unlikely to be a regular occurrence for a while. Generally, babies smile readily by 12 weeks, and by 6 months most smile ecstatically at the people they know best – you!

  • Tracks objects with eyes

    At birth, your baby can't focus her eyes at the same time, so they may wander or cross now and then. As her vision improves, your baby begins tracking objects that interest her and watching faces intently. Pass a colorful rattle or other toy in front of her eyes to encourage development, and be sure to spend plenty of time face to face with her.

  • Starts solid food

    Most babies are ready to start solid food when they've doubled their birth weight (or weigh about 15 pounds) and are at least 4 months old. Before spooning up the pureed sweet potatoes, make sure that your baby can sit well when supported and shows signs of a growing appetite. He may eye your food or even reach for your dinner while you're mid-bite!

  • Rolls over

    By 7 months, most babies can roll onto their tummies and back again. Your baby might use her new skill to move where she wants to go – to reach an elusive toy or get closer to you. Some babies adopt rolling as their primary mode of ground transportation for a while, but others skip it altogether and go right to sitting, lunging, and crawling.

  • Sits without help

    Your baby will probably learn to sit independently between the ages of 4 and 7 months. This is the time when her back and neck muscles are strong enough to hold her upright and she's figured where to put her legs so she won't topple over. Most babies can sit up for several minutes without support by the time they're 8 months old.

  • Has a raking grasp

    Starting between 4 and 8 months, most babies can use a raking grasp to pull objects closer and can also move toys from one hand to another. Once she can pick things up, she'll want to grab everything she sees, so it's a good idea to keep dangerous and valuable objects out of her reach from now on.

  • Crawls

    Baby on the go! Soon after your baby is able to sit without support, it won't be long before she moves to all fours and starts crawling – which means she can get into a lot more even faster. Check that your home is childproofed against household hazards.

    Some babies find other ways to move around during this time, like shuffling on their bottoms or slithering on their stomachs. Don't worry about your baby's style – what's important is becoming mobile, and all methods of getting around strengthen the muscles that will help her to walk. Encourage her movement by placing toys just beyond her reach.

  • Cruises

    At about 9 months, your baby will probably start pulling herself up to a stand while holding onto the couch or a chair. As she gains more confidence, she'll begin to "cruise," sliding around your living room as she holds onto the furniture for support. About this time, she may even totter along while gripping your hand, though she probably won't be ready to take her first solo steps quite yet.

  • Says his first word

    Your baby's babbling will gradually sound more like real conversation as he begins trying out tones and patterns similar to the ones you use. You may hear his first real words – often "mama" or "dada" – as early as 6 months. Though it's sure to melt your heart, your baby doesn't associate those words with you until he's almost a year old. You can foster his language development by talking and reading to him often.

  • Uses a pincer grasp

    As your baby's fine motor skills develop, he learns to perfect his pincer grasp, which lets him pick up small objects between his thumb and forefinger. He might enjoy picking up puzzle pieces and putting them down again, and activities like this help him develop nimble hands. You can also encourage him at mealtime by giving him soft finger food to pick up, such as peas and cooked carrots.

  • Drinks from a cup

    Your baby loves to drink from a cup, just like she sees you doing. Sippy cups can be a great way for babies to transition from nursing or bottle-feeding to a regular cup. They can also improve hand-to-mouth coordination (and avoid spills).

    To help prevent tooth decay, the American Dental Association recommends switching to a regular cup by your child's first birthday.

  • Walks

    When it comes to milestones, your baby's first steps can't be beat. Most babies begin tottering unsteadily sometime between 9 and 12 months and are walking well by the time they're 14 or 15 months old. Before long, she'll be off and running toward independence, and her whole world will change as she leaves babyhood behind.

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  • Watch the video: When Should my Baby.. Milestones 0-12 months (June 2022).


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