Baby Milestones: What and When

Baby Milestones: What and When
November 18 08:34 2016

It is always exciting to have a newborn in the house, especially for the parents who will always be on the look out for some of those series of firsts. Baby milestones are a big deal for the parents and some parents get worried if their child doesn’t hit the milestone in expected time, which is something they really shouldn’t worry about really as each kid is different and will hit the milestones at his or her own pace. This short guide will talk about some of the milestones to look out for when your baby grows but do not be stressed when your kid doesn’t follow through on this list, they will get there at their own pace. However, if you are too worried that the child is missing way too many of the milestone, you can go ahead and consult with your pediatrician.



Baby milestones during the first year of life



Around two months of age a baby should be able to smile at mummy and daddy. This can take just a tiny bit longer at times so do not be worried when it does not happen. Babies born prematurely will take even longer to smile back at parents.

You can encourage your baby to hit the milestone by smiling and talking to the baby a lot, which is probably what most parents do anyway.

Pediatricians say that smiling is a very important milestone for the baby to hit. If your baby does not smile by two months of age you should keep a close eye on them and see if they smile by 3 months. If they still have not smiled by three months then there could be a problem and you should go in and consult with your doctor. Premature babies do not apply to these timelines.


Sleeping all night

You know how your baby is always waking up during the night? Well, that should come to an end when your baby is 4 months old. At four months or there about a baby should be able to sleep for around 8 hours without waking up to feed. Furthermore, by the age of 6 months they should sleep through the night without waking up for a feed.


Parents can encourage the milestone by letting the child sleep longer during the night and increasing the time between each nighttime feed. Also, it helps not to run and pick up the baby when they cry at night. That way they learn how to fall back to sleep without your help whenever they wake up at night.

If your kid is not sleeping through the night by 6 to 8 months of age, you might want to examine your habits. Chances are you might be attending to the baby way too often during the night and if you back off a bit you will notice the baby slowly beginning to sleep through the night. If the baby cries uncontrollable and does not fall asleep even when you soothe him, it can be a sign of a reflux condition and you should report it to your doctor.


Rolling over

It is always exciting to watch your baby move and roll on their own. The most common roll is the front to back roll that can happen around the 3 month mark for some babies but the average is around 6 months for most infants. As said earlier the baby will roll front onto their back first before they can master rolling on the other direction. In the beginning they are most likely to get stuck somewhere in between the roll and cry. It is important not to leave the baby on elevated surfaces during this time as they can roll and fall over.

To encourage your baby to master rolling over, try talking to the baby while you are down on the floor and cheer on their efforts of rolling. You can also put some toys in a distance that is a little further away so the baby can try to get to them by flipping over.

If your baby still isn’t rolling over by six months you can talk to your doctor but usually there is nothing to worry about unless they are not even trying or attempting to roll. Otherwise they just need a little bit more time to make the mark and everything is okay.


Sitting unsupported

The sitting unsupported milestone comes around the 8 to 10 months mark for most kids. The more you leave your kid on the floor alone without any strap ones or swing chairs they are more likely to hit the milestone right on time.

If the baby is not showing any signs of sitting by themselves by the ninth month of age then you should have him or her examined by a physical therapist.



Crawling is a big big milestone that gets parents and the baby himself very excited. Most babies begin to crawl anytime between 6 and 9 months. To encourage it, parents can leave the baby on their tummy on the floor more often then get down to the ground and try to attract them to come to you. You can use their favorite toy to coax them to move.

Since some infants don’t crawl at all, it is not a big deal if your baby does not hit the milestone.


Reaching, grasping and holding

Around the sixth month babies tend to bring up their hands in front of them towards the midline. It is not until the 8 to 9 month mark that they will actually be able to grasp at things especially with their thumb and forefinger. When they achieve this you will see them pick up objects and bring them to their mouth.

You can encourage this by offering the baby small and safe objects. Colorful and noisy toys work very well to encourage the baby to grab and jiggle staff.

If your baby is not picking and putting staff in their mouth by 12 months you should let your pediatrician know.


Clapping and waving

Waving and clapping is most likely to happen anytime form the 6 months to 10 months of age. There is not proper fixed time as this action develops depending on how the people around the baby play with them. The more clapping games you play with the baby the faster your baby will be able to mimic the action. Also, you should try to get the baby excited very often, when a baby is excited they tend to bring their hands together in a clapping motion.

If your baby is not mimicking your actions by the 12th month mark you should let your pediatrician know.


Pulling up to standing

Most kids can pull themselves up to a standing position by around the ages of 9 to 12 months. Some babies can learn and reach the milestone earlier around 8 months. It is usually recommended that parents drop down the mattress of their baby’s crib around the 6-month mark just in case the baby learns to stand and you do not notice. At this stage it is important to be aware of any furniture that baby could try to pull on that could tumble, like a top-heavy chair or an entertainment center.

It is a good idea to leave the baby on the floor and allow them a lot of free time so they can discover their feet and hands. If he or she is not pulling up by the 12th month mark then you should report it to your pediatrician so they can examine the baby.



After the baby learns how to pull and stand up, they will quickly learn how to cruise and walk. They teach themselves how to walk by holding on to the furniture; around the 1-year mark they will let go of the furniture and take their first step. Some kids can take up to 15 months to make the first step, so be patient with your kid and give them a lot of free time on the floor.





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