Your baby has entered a brand new world and will grow to adapt to it. As a parent, you must be tuned into each minute change, especially during the first few days with your baby. This is because noticing how your baby responds to the world can help you understand its growth and development.
Baby growth milestones can help parents take care of their infants systematically. With that in mind, the following are some new-born milestones by month to watch out for.
Baby Growth Milestones Listed by Month
One month old
When your baby is only a month old, its senses are still in the process of developing. During this time, the baby will focus on testing them. Your baby should:
- Start noticing faces.
- Start recognizing the sound of your voice.
- Start making cooing noises that differ from simple cries.
- Be able to move its head from one side to another while lying on the stomach.
- Be able to move its hands and bring them to the eyes and mouth.
- Be able to see bold patterns, especially black and white ones.
Two months old
Baby growth milestones for the second month are very important. This is because the second month is when the baby truly starts responding to the world. If the baby does not show these developmental milestones, you must visit a paediatrician as it could indicate a developmental problem. Your baby should:
- Start to smile at people.
- Learn to self-soothe (a sign of this is bringing hands to the mouth to calm itself).
- Begin to fuss and gets bored with repetitive activities.
- Track objects with eyes – this is a key milestone.
- Hold its head up.
- Push itself upwards when lying on the tummy.
Three months old
When babies reach three months old, they begin to develop emotional skills. Thus, you will notice a change in their communication. Rather than simply crying, babies try to express how they feel. Some developmental steps for babies at this age include:
- Recognizing and distinguishing your face from others.
- Expressing itself through different cries. You may notice a certain cry for a diaper change, another for hunger, and so on.
- Close fist and open palms.
- Turn the head away when bored.
- Swipe at dangling objects and follow movements with the eyes.
- Enjoy playing games and may cry when fun activities stop.
- Respond to different sounds.
Four months old
When your baby is four months old, it is officially no longer a new-born! Doesn’t time fly quickly? At this stage, your baby will learn to interact with people. The baby should:
- Giggle and laugh.
- Reach for toys with one hand.
- Hold its own head, unsupported.
- Copy facial expressions.
- Lean on one elbow while lying down.
Five months old
At five months old, your baby should develop skills that will help later. The physical milestones for infants include the following:
- Rolling over.
- Babbling – this is a sign that the baby is learning to communicate by using language.
- Looking at itself in the mirror.
- Putting toys in the mouth – this is a sign of exploration.
- Entertaining itself.
Six months old
Congratulations, your baby is 6 months old! By now, the baby should be learning to be independent. Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean it’s ready to move out into its own apartment just yet! The physical milestones for infants at this stage include learning mobility and language. They include:
- Creeping on the floor.
- Sitting up, unaided.
- Passing objects from one hand to another.
- Responding to its name.
- Understanding the meaning of simple words.
If your baby has not reached these developmental milestones yet, do not worry. These milestones are flexible. It takes some babies longer to learn mobility than others. Do not be alarmed!
Seven months old
At seven months old, your baby’s curiosity starts to peak. It experiments with different objects to learn about them. As a result, you may find yourself picking up things from the floor all the time! The following are the baby growth milestones to watch out for.
- Dropping things on the floor.
- Responding to words like no.
- Finding partially hidden objects.
- Playing simple games like peek-a-boo.
Additionally, at this stage, you can introduce the baby to solid foods after breastfeeding it for the initial six months. Consult a doctor to know what foods are appropriate for it.
Eight months old
Now, your baby’s mobility begins to improve. So, the physical milestones for infants at this age focus on muscular development. They include:
- Developing a grip while holding objects.
- Standing while holding something.
Nine months old
Your baby is nearing a significant stage in the baby growth process. This stage is talking. While some babies begin to say words, others may babble and experiment with tones and pitches. Your baby should:
- Try to communicate. So, it makes language specific babbling sounds.
- Have favourite toys.
- Start identifying strangers and may cling to you to avoid them.
- Point at things.
- Copy sounds.
Ten months old
Your baby will be turning into a little explorer by now. It is eager to see what the world has to offer. It should:
- Bang on things, throw things or use objects to make noise.
- Pull on things to stand.
- Sit without any additional aid.
- Hold onto objects to move around.
Eleven months old
The developmental milestones during this age overlap with the milestones for ten months old. This is because all babies take their own time to learn and grow. Do not rush your baby. Enjoy each milestone as it comes! Additionally, your baby should:
- Be able to crawl on the stairs.
- Make sounds that mimic speech.
- Develop some separation anxiety when you leave the room.
Twelve months old
Your baby is now a toddler! It has experienced a year of growth and change, and is ready for more! At this stage, the baby should:
- Make gestures like waving goodbye.
- Respond to simple requests.
- Look at an object when it’s named (example: when you say apple, it should look at an apple).
- Take a few unsteady steps.