Infant developmental milestones
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All babies are different. So when looking at the infant developmental milestones below, keep in mind that it's a general guideline. No two babies will follow these the same.
Infant milestones can give you an overview of what to look for and expect. It can be a source of anticipation, but it can also be a source of anxiety.
Don't worry if you notice your baby's developments are not matching those of the infant milestones chart below. It is very normal for a "normal and healthy" baby to be ahead in some areas while behind in others. Talk to your baby's physician for more details.
Infant milestones chart
|1 month old
- Make some controlled movements with the head
- Still in flexed fetal position as if in the womb
- Need to be wrapped firmly with blanket to mimic the feel and warmth of the womb
- Focus on objects about a foot away
- Able to recognize (visually noting their presence) black and white patterns
- Recognize some sounds. Could include parents' voices.
|2 months old
- Might take notice of her hands
- Can begin to visually track an object
- Make those lovable cooing, and gurgling sounds
- Making further progress in head control and strength
- Begins to make associations between behavior and wanted response (e.g., crying to be fed, or held).
|3 months old
- Limbs stretching and getting stronger.
- Able to support the upper body (head and chest) when lying down on stomach.
- Push down with feet when held over firm surface.
- Recognizes objects and people farther away.
- Begins to grab toys, clothing, and hair.
- Improving hand-eye coordination.
- Begins to learn that her actions cause reactions from others.
- Begins to laugh.
|4 months old
- Legs strong enough to stand supported.
- More accurate hand-eye coordination and is able to grab dangling toys.
- Makes more variety of sounds.
- May change the shape of the mouth to make different sounds.
- Improved depth perception.
|5 months old
- May begin to wiggle forward.
- Can sit up on the floor or chair supported or propped.
- Notices colors.
- Imitates sounds, and gestures.
- Can switch toys from one hand to another, or to the mouth.
- Good hand-eye coordination; reaching for a toy with accuracy.
|6 months old
- Can begin to sit up by herself.
- May stand on her own leaning on furniture or others for balance and support.
- Begins to show manipulative skills with hands and fingers in some cases.
- Overall improvements in social and cognitive play (e.g., better imitation of sounds and expressions, better understanding of behavior and reactions).
Again, keep in mind that this is only a guideline and that no two infants are exactly the same. My older daughter was a bit slower and my second daughter was a bit faster.
An idea worth thinking about
If you haven't thought of this already, it might be worth your time to consider charting all these on your own with your infant. Maybe keep track of your infant's milestones in a diary, calendar, or notebook. If you include pictures, even better.
Later, this makes for great memories on which to look back or great arts and craft material and your now-infant grows up.
Just imagine all the fun times you'll have. Look forward to them, and enjoy the times.
"education at play"
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