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MAIN Arrow to HealthHealth Arrow to PregnancyPregnancy Arrow to Baby's First YearBaby's First Year

Baby's first yearAfter the discomforts of pregnancy, the adventure of labor and childbirth, and the baby room decorating, there is nothing like holding an infant in your arms and knowing the world of promise contained in that new little bundle of joy.

The 12 months that lie ahead are probably the most wonderful experience of discovery that parent and child can share. Note, however, that all babies will grow and develop at their own pace, so no need to worry about your infant "hitting the mark" in reaching common childhood developmental milestones if they are otherwise alert, healthy and happy:

Below are very general guidelines for baby's first year of development, along with more detailed tips and advice on the subject from expert Web guides on baby's first year.

Infancy - 3 months

infant baby sleepingIn only a few short weeks, gone are the uncoordinated movements as infants begin to grow and develop. By three months, babies are smiling as they recognize familiar faces, are raising and turning their heads with control, and reaching for objects dangling above them. Teething pain may become a problem now or in the months ahead.

6 months

At six months, baby is usually sleeping through the night, but during the day it's non-stop playtime accompanied by grins and giggles as they begin to interact with everyone around them. They also usually learn the art of grasping infant toys, and occasionally attempt to feed themselves.

9 months

By nine months, babies' natural curiosity is the motivation for crawling, and discovering the world on their own. Playing peek-a-boo, and waving hello and goodbye, is also a favorite activity at this age.

9 month old baby
12 months

By their first birthday, babies are beginning to know and speak at least a few words, are "cruising" the household furniture to walk by themselves, and maybe even taking their first steps unassisted as they graduate into full toddlerhood.

All about baby's first year around the Web

Elsewhere on the Web, learn more about common developmental milestones, along with expert tips & advice on baby's crying & sleeping habits, the do's and don'ts of feeding and related choking hazards, suggested testing and vaccinations, and other guides to watching your infant grow into a healthy, bouncing baby in the first 12 months ...

also see in Party Ideas -> 1st Birthday Party Ideas

Your Growing Baby - Get expert tips from the March of Dimes with an interactive guide to newborn behavior, advice on newborn medical testing, vaccinations, early childhood illnesses, developmental milestones.

How I Grow : Newborn through Month Two - Here's a helpful guide for new parents with information on comforting baby, related safety tips, developmental milestones, plus advice for relieving stress related to caring for your newborn.

NNCC Infant Development - Clear fact sheet on physical, social and emotional growth from birth to 12 months plus suggested activities with baby to assist in their development, related safety tips.

Learn the Signs, Act Early - Learn about possible developmental roadblocks with this extensive guide from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control with detailed FAQ's on assessing & testing infants for signs of autism, hearing or vision loss, cerebral palsy, and mental retardation.

Your Baby's First Year Week by Week - Detailed information on typical milestones from week 1 through 52, with hints & tips on everything from baby's sleeping, crying and eating habits to walking and social development.

This information is intended as reference and not as medical advice.
All treatment decisions should be made by medical professionals.

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