HomeBabiesBaby Milestones: Your Baby's First Year Development

Baby Milestones: Your Baby’s First Year Development


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If you are here, we are assuming that you are parents to a newborn baby. So, congratulations! Witnessing your baby’s growth through the first year of their life is a gratifying experience. It allows you to see them grow, not just physically but also mentally.

Baby milestones are an excellent way for you to track your baby’s growth and development with each passing month. It allows you to keep a check on their communication skills, motor skills, and also the kind of eating habits they have developed over time.

However, remember that every baby is different. Some babies are advanced in their growth, while some babies take a little extra time. Unless you notice something amiss with your baby’s health, there’s nothing about which you need to worry.

As you scroll along these individual baby milestones month-by-month, focus on capturing and cherishing every one of these moments since they pass by really quickly.

Month 1

The first month after birth is usually the one that goes on within a blink of an eye. By the time you are getting used to taking care of another person in your life, you will realize that they have grown out of their wrinkly appearance and are starting to develop their facial features.

Your baby will be crying their lungs out quite frequently , but that’s normal. It is either because they are hungry or they have soiled their nappies. By the end of the first month, your baby should have grown by 4 cm and gained another 0.7 to 0.9 kg.

Also, by the end of the first month, you’d need to take them for their doctor’s visit to check their growth, development, and other possible complications that weren’t visible at the time of birth.

Month 2

The second month is a very important part of the baby milestones since your baby is starting to perceive things happening in their surroundings. As they grow, you will notice that they will engage in more movements by thrashing their hands and limbs around.

But what’s going to make you stop and admire them is their cute little smile, which should be evident by the 6-week mark. By the second month, your baby should grow by 3.8 cm and gain around 0.9 kg.

Some babies experience a growth spurt by the end of 6 weeks to 8 weeks after their birth. So, if you notice people saying, “Wow! Your baby has grown so much,” it’s because of that. Also, you need to consult your pediatrician about the vaccinations by the two-month mark.

Month 3

By the third month, your baby has associated you with its foundation of survival. They are going to be extremely attached to you and not finding you around them might trigger a bout of a shrill cry from them. Talk to your baby by this time because chances are that they will find the interaction amusing and even respond to you in babbles.

Your baby should start sleeping more by this month, getting at least 5-6 hours of prolonged sleep at a stretch. Catch up on your sleep during that time. Despite your baby growing stronger each day, ensure that you support their head and neck even at the 3rd-month mark since they will still have a soft spot on their head.

Month 4

When talking about baby milestones by month, the four-month is another crucial point in your baby’s first year of development. Your baby is growing stronger and should gain another 0.65 kg by this month.

You should start seeing more coordinated movement, especially as their sense of touch and even their vision is growing strong every day. As their hearing is developing more and more, you need to help them familiarize themselves with words and language. So, communicate with them.

By the fourth month, your baby is ready for its next round of vaccination. So, consult about the same with the pediatrician.

Month 5

Your baby is so close to their half birthday and they are gradually gearing up for some solid food. By this month, your baby’s weight must have doubled their birth weight and that’s a sign of proper development. They are also growing in terms of their height too. However, don’t worry if you see delayed growth since every baby is different.

As your baby is becoming more and more motile, you need to consider baby-proofing the house. Also, avoid leaving your baby on the bed unattended since they might end up rolling around and accidentally hurting themselves.

Also, by the five-month mark, your baby is likely going to be more vocal about their needs. So, pay attention and offer them the comfort that they need to grow and develop.

Month 6

Finally, your baby is halfway through its first year of life. Crazy, right? It seems like they are growing up too fast and there’s nothing you can do. But, at the same time, your baby is getting better at communication and coordination.

Your baby also has a good sense of differentiation by this point. This means that they can differentiate between parents, siblings, caretakers, relatives, etc. Since your baby is going to recognize more and more people, chances are that they might feel anxious when surrounded by too many strangers. It’s normal at this age and it’s normal if they cry when separated for too long from their parents.

You can introduce solid foods by this month but you can keep breastfeeding too. Also, the six-month health check-in with your pediatrician is very important. You will discuss sleeping patterns, teeth care, their diet, growth, and even the risks of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Month 7

As your baby is gradually getting started with solid foods, you will notice that they are appearing more independent. They will try to sit up on their own (with some support, of course). Teething is very common in some babies by this month, so if your baby sounds cranky or has developed a habit of biting things, you know why.

Also, by the seventh-month mark, your baby’s motor skills are improving, so pay close attention to that as well. You will notice them grasping onto objects and passing them along. Also, they will have a tendency to clasp onto things, so encourage them in that too.

Common movements like crawling, rolling, and shuffling around the room are also common by this month. Babbling noises are also quite common by this month, so make sure that you are mimicking them while they babble.

Month 8

By month 8, you are likely on the edge all the time because your baby is zooming around the home every time you turn your back. Your baby’s diet is progressively improving, so you can introduce smaller finger foods like soft fruits, steamed vegetables, etc.

Separation anxiety is very recurrent and common by this month, especially in babies who have spent the majority of their time in close vicinity of their parents. So, you might have to reassure them quite often, cuddle them and stay by their side to give them the reassurance that you are present there.

Introduce napping every day since they will have a hard time falling asleep at night due to anxiety. Surround them with toys that offer mental stimulation since that will support their growth quite well.

Month 9

The ninth month isn’t very different from the eighth. However, you will start noticing your child’s personality shining through. They are likely going to babble and communicate more, so don’t suppress them from expressing their emotions. The separation anxiety will graduate into this month too but you will find your baby getting accustomed to being surrounded by more familiar faces.

By the ninth month, your baby’s stature is strong enough to hold them upright while grabbing onto furniture pieces. They will try to stand up and trying to learn how to walk. Since bigger furniture can be a health hazard, try to secure them to the ground so they don’t topple over on the baby.

Introduce more functional toys, especially ones that come with a door, lever or moving parts since that will stimulate their mental ability and their motor functions.

Month 10

Your baby is likely very active and you are probably quite tired trying to get them to settle down. There are standard growth charts available but we’d recommend that you don’t follow them to the T. Every baby grows at their pace, so if your baby hasn’t grown according to the chart, there’s nothing you need to worry about.

Also, since the babies are a lot more active by this month, a few of them end up losing a few pounds, which is normal too. However, if you notice a drastically dropping weight, consult the pediatrician immediately.

You might also hear your baby speaking their first words, so keep your ears open for that. Introduce more interesting sensory toys by this month.

Month 11

This is the penultimate one in the baby milestones month by month. And, you must be sitting here wondering how quickly the time flew by. As your baby is maturing over the months, their senses are developing with them. Their hand-eye coordination has improved a lot and they can now focus on fast-moving objects.

If your baby decides to wean off breastfeeding, ensure that the transition is slow and gradual. The last thing you want to do is leave them cranky and irritated at all times. Some babies aren’t ready to stop breastfeeding by this time and that’s okay too.

Their communication skills are pretty amazing by this time and you might hear an occasional mama and dada coming out of their mouth too. You might notice them trying or even starting to walk on their own.

Month 12

Your baby is finally a one-year-old. The journey from a newborn to a one-year-old is one of the most memorable experiences for parents. Their brain has grown and developed by 60% since their birth and they are 50% longer than they were at birth. Sounds fascinating, doesn’t it?

From a newborn to a toddler, your baby is now curious about things around them and you will notice as they start holding and examining things in their hands. You can start teaching them more about independence so they can gradually overcome their separation anxiety.

Read them stories during nighttime from picture books since that allows them to associate things with the visuals. Also, start enabling your kid to eat on their own. This is a great way to build a positive relationship with food. 

Somapika Dutta (B.Sc Physiology, Honours)
Somapikar holds Bachelors Degree in Physiology from University of Culcutta. She has 6+ years of experience writing in different niches, including health, tech and lifestyle. An animal enthusiast and a raging foodie, experiencing life - one day at a time.


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