Monthly Infant Development Calendar Chapter 1
A newborn sleeps 12-20 hours per day, but don't let that fool you: your baby will go through enormous transformations in his first month. Your womb was safe, warm, dark, and quiet. Now your baby has to adapt to the outside world, full of bright lights, noises, and unfamiliar sensations.
A newborn's most developed sense is touch and least developed sense is sight. Your baby will want to focus on things close up, especially your face. Be sure and make lots of silly faces. You'll never have a more appreciative audience! Because baby's stomach is tiny and can't hold very much food, and because he's growing so fast, he'll need to eat frequently: about every 3-4 hours. Breast milk contains beneficial bacteria that colonize an infant's digestive tract and protect against harmful bacteria.
At the age of 1-2 days, a baby's stomach can hold approximately the volume of a cooked chickpea. From 3-6 days of age, it can contain 1-2 oz, about the size of a grape. By the end of the first month, the stomach can hold food about the volume of a strawberry.
Your baby's very rapid mental development continues in the second month. Baby loves being held as well as being spoken and sung to. In response, she may start cooing back at you. It's the start of a great conversation! Your little one is beginning to anticipate certain events and may start to smack her lips just before feeding time. Read more
Your baby has changed so much from birth! In month 3 primitive reflexes are disappearing, giving way to movements under willed control. Ever-stronger muscles, along with explosive neurological growth in the brain and central nervous system, allow for better physical coordination and vision. Baby can raise his head and chest when lying on his stomach, bring his hand to his mouth, and swipe at objects. Read more
In the fourth to seventh months your baby will make a huge developmental leap: she'll learn to coordinate her senses, like vision, hearing, and touch, with motor (muscle movement) abilities. This means your baby will be developing skills like grasping, raking at objects with her fingers, and bringing her hands to her mouth. Baby will start to push off the floor and learn to roll over as well. Read more
Big news! Somewhere around months 5 and 6, your little one will develop the ability to sit unsupported for up to 30 seconds or more. He'll be able to sit in the tripod position, supporting himself with one arm, for longer periods of time. Your baby is also developing the ulnar-palmar (mitten) grasp technique. He needs to use this method of holding things because babies of this age can't yet use their opposable thumbs, that is, grasp objects by moving their thumbs around to touch their fingers. Read more
By the end of the sixth month, your baby might sit without support and even be able to bear some weight on her legs. Babies often start babbling at about this age. Practice a little conversational give-and-take! Her liking for the soft solids you may have introduced will be aided both by teething, which usually begins about now, and by her newfound appreciation of salty tastes. Babies are born with a sweet tooth, but only at this age do they acquire a taste for salt. Read more
As your baby's repertoire of movements expands, his muscular and skeletal systems are growing and developing, too. Your little one will extend in length by a whopping 50% in the first year! Baby's bones are thickening and elongating, while at the same time his muscles are strengthening, allowing for a more and more complex range of motion. Now, at 7 months, your baby may be able to put all his weight on his legs, an important milestone in the progress toward those first steps. Read more
Look out, world! Stepping up that already astonishing rate of growth and development, your baby may begin to crawl this month (if she hasn't already)! To nourish the bones that support all the new and exciting activity, your baby needs a balanced diet that includes calcium and phosphorus, critical for bone growth, along with protein and other nutrients. Vitamin D must be present for bones to absorb key minerals. Read more
Upper respiratory infections are the most common causes of illness in childhood. Bronchitis is an inflammation of the main air passages to the lungs, the bronchi. Bronchitis may be acute (short lived) or chronic, meaning that it lasts a long time and recurs often. Acute bronchitis usually is caused by viral or bacterial infections. Chronic bronchitis generally is due to long-term exposure to irritants like cigarette smoke. Read more
The areas of a baby's brain that control motor skills (movement) mature in a predictable sequence. The earliest areas to mature control the head and neck muscles. Then motor control of the torso, arms, and hands develops. Finally, the areas controlling the legs mature. Now, between 10 and 12 months, your baby's legs are, well, kicking in. Most babies of this age can crawl, sit without support, pull themselves up to a standing position, and cruise along the furniture. Read more
There's so much your little one can do! Although it takes years for movement patterns to be perfected, his greater motor abilities mean he can now use a pincer grip (thumb and forefinger) to hold objects, make music by banging a drum or playing a xylophone, dance to a tune (maybe with a little help from you), and even sing along. Improved hand-eye coordination allows him to feed himself finger foods. Give your baby a wide assortment of foods, both for varied nutrition and to help him appreciate different tastes. Read more
Your baby is 1 year old! Each baby is unique and develops in her own way and at her own rate. But no matter where your child falls in the developmental spectrum, it's amazing how much has changed since birth. Neurological development, in particular, has been astounding. Your baby's brain has almost tripled in size since day 1. Involuntary movement has changed to voluntary control, and immature vocalizing and crying have given way to actual speech. Once totally helpless, she is now very much her own person, with noticeable preferences and distinct personality traits. Read more
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The material on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Consult a licensed medical professional for the diagnosis and treatment of all medical conditions and before starting a new diet or exercise program. If you have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.