Your baby’s first six months are an exciting time. Many developmental milestones are passed as your baby grows. This is a crucial time in your baby’s life. Moms and dads should watch for these milestones and help their baby with them. Let’s look at what you can expect for your first six months with your baby.
Month One Through Three
At first, it is going to seem like all moms and dads do is go through the cycles of feeding, changing, and getting baby to sleep. However, after a couple of weeks, the baby will start to respond to mom and dad’s voice, touch and while baby’s little neck and head can’t lift too far, the baby will start shifting toward the direction of mom and dad’s voice. Black and white patterns entrance the baby at this stage, so try to find toys that have these colors for your baby. Your baby will try to get her hands to her mouth at this stage, even though it’s wobbly.
As a parent, this is the time to play, cuddle, explore the outside with walks and touch baby’s hands to different textures and objects (that are relatively clean of course) and talk and read to your baby. Get her ready for her next milestones. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot spoil a baby in any of these stages. Dive right in and be active with your baby. Bring her around other kids. Let her have tummy time for a few minutes to help her develop the muscles to roll over and lift her head.
If your baby doesn’t respond to lights, play, or seems uninterested in cuddles and hugs, or doesn’t have a proper sucking reflex, please see your doctor immediately.
This is the best month. Your baby will be smiling and having fun with you as you play peek-a-boo and babble when you talk to her. You won’t have to support her head, and she will try to grab at objects that you offer her or dangle over her head. Tummy time is vital now. She can lift her head well during tummy time. Her legs are now gaining strength, and if you hold her up, she can push off with her legs. Your baby will mimic your sounds and respond to you when you talk to her.
This is a very fun time. The baby’s getting a schedule now to sleep soundly and by now mom and dad know the baby’s signals for when she’s hungry or needs a diaper change. Parents help the baby learn to start sitting up. Rather than just hearing your voice now, the baby will be able to see you and identify you from a distance. The baby can now put her hands in her mouth. That means you’ll have to be aware of what she is putting in her mouth.
Encouragement as a parent is crucial at this stage. Help your baby learn to roll over, sit up and babble away. Talk to and read to your baby. Show her new objects and name them for her. Play with all sorts of shapes and big blocks. Point to yourself and say “mommy” or “daddy.” Then point to your baby and say “baby.” Show your baby what she looks like while you’re holding her in the mirror. Make bath time a fun time by using bath toys and soft washcloths. The more you can get your baby to talk, the better.
If your baby can’t hold her head up, doesn’t respond to toys, sounds or lights and seems uninterested in play or is upset by other people, please see your doctor.
Months Four to Six
At this point, your baby is totally immersed in the world around her. She smiles, laughs, and babbles all the time. She recognizes her name, and when your voice tone changes like when you are happy or say a firm “no.” Your baby can bring objects to her with a grasp and change them hand-to-hand. She bounces up and down when you hold her up. She can almost roll over and sit up on her own. She needs practice, so help her!
If you call to your baby, she will turn to look at you. She is delighted by new objects and experiences. Help her explore her new full-color world. If you hide toys, she loves to find them. Games and play become easier and more fun as she is interested in everything. Peek-a-boo becomes a favorite.
Give your baby plenty of safe room to play. Now is the time to childproof your home, if you haven’t already. Your baby is almost ready to crawl! Continue to read, name objects, and talk to her. The more interaction your baby has with others, the better.
If your baby seems floppy, doesn’t like affection, has no reaction to smiles or talking, or objects or toys, please see your doctor.
The first six months of your baby’s life is an exciting time of growth. The more you interact with your baby, the faster she will develop and enjoy time with you. Your baby is developing her personality in these first few months, so help her on her way. Love and adore your little one, and you will receive such beautiful rewards in return.