As soon as you bring the baby home from the hospital, your mind will inevitably turn to the ever-important question, “Is my baby on track?” Every new parent just wants what’s best for their baby, and one way to do this is to make sure your baby is hitting all of the developmental milestones and growing as they should.
In this Birthday Keepsakes blog, we’ll cover the developmental milestones from months 1 through 6 to help you answer the question, “Is my baby on track?” Stay tuned; we’ll cover months 7-12 next month!
Developmental Milestones: 1-6 Months
At one month old, your little babe is still very much in newborn stage and still may spend a large part of the day sleeping. However, by one month, your baby should begin turning his or her head toward sounds – especially family sounds like mom’s and dad’s voices. Your baby should spend a portion of the day engaging in tummy time and should be able to lift his or her neck for brief periods.
By two months, your baby should be more alert and spend more of the day awake. Your baby should be beginning to smile at people, actively turning toward sounds, and starting to make gurgling and cooing noises – especially when interacting with a parent or older sibling. When practicing tummy time, your baby should be getting better at holding up his or her head and stabilizing themselves when on the belly.
A three-month-old baby should no longer require as much assistance in stabilizing his or her head, especially when it comes to tummy time. Your baby should also be smiling frequently and engaging with you by making cooing noises or mimicking your sounds. She should also be able to grasp a toy and bring it to his or her mouth with ease by this point. Importantly, by three months, a baby’s eyesight should be nearly fully developed and he or she should be able to spot and track your movements from across the room.
By four months, your smiley baby should also be able to mimic other facial expressions, such as a frown or a look of surprise. Your baby should also be beginning to work toward rolling over from belly to back, if not able to do so fully. Your baby should be able to recognize the faces of people he or she sees often and should be engaged with those around him or her.
Doctors agree, your baby should have reached double his or her birth weight by 5 months. Your baby should be able to roll over from belly to back and may be starting to sit upright with some assistance. Your baby should be napping 2-3 times per day and most alert and awake first thing in the morning. Your baby might even be ready to start solid foods (read more here to help you decide).
By six months, your baby should be able to recognize if a person is a stranger and show some level of fear toward unknown people and/or a preference for someone familiar. Babies should also recognize when they hear their own name and be able to start making basic vowel sounds (“ah,” “eh,” “oh”). Your baby should also be able to roll both ways – from back to tummy, and vice versa – as well as sit largely unassisted. Your baby might even begin to make progress toward crawling this month!
If you fear your baby is falling behind, keep in mind – all babies are different and some move through some milestones before others. If you have any concerns, please contact your baby’s pediatrician to help you answer the question, “Is my baby on track?” They will help you answer this question with confidence and take the proper steps to access developmental services if need be. Your baby might also accomplish some of these milestones ahead of schedule.
Being able to confidently answer the question, “Is my baby on track?” is the first step to make sure your baby is well on his or her way to hitting all of the major developmental milestones. As new parents, it can be stressful to navigate the ins and outs of raising a baby, but we know this is just what you’re cut out for. Birthday Keepsakes is here to help you preserve the memories and track the amazing milestones your children will reach in their lives.