Your Baby’s Development — Introduction to Developmental Milestones

Developmental milestones: Each Baby develops in their own time

Having a baby is a beautiful journey: from the 40 weeks you carry them around till they are in your arms, then watching them grow every single day. It’s a delight to see them graduate from crawling to independent walking, but before achieving this important milestone in their life, your baby goes through various phases of development.

Although each baby grows in their own unique way and at their own pace, there are guidelines about developmental milestones that every parent should know so that they can keep an eye on the warning signs in case of any delay in reaching the milestones. These milestones are called ‘developmental milestones.’

What are the key developmental milestones?

Especially during a child’s first two years of life, there are key activities that the baby will learn and begin to do, that signals that they are developing on track. Such milestones can include holding up their own neck and turning onto their belly.

How can you identify if you baby is developing on track?

Remember that it is very difficult to determine whether the delay is a sign of a long-term developmental issue leading to disability or that the child will catch up and be typical in their development. Achieving these milestones takes a lot of practice. Your child might do something a few times but it will take time for them master it. For example, you might witness the child neck holding up their neck at three months, rolling to one or both sides around four months, sitting with support and starting to crawl at about six months, standing around nine months and ultimately walking at 11 months.

A baby or child can show signs of delayed development at any point in time.

What can cause a delay in development?

Any delay in the milestones can be due to a number of reasons including premature birth, birth asphyxia, delayed crying at birth, episodes of seizures, vitamin D deficiency or neurological deficits like cerebral palsy and down syndrome. If you feel that your baby is lagging behind in any area, consult with your baby’s healthcare provider. With this in mind you should be able to help your baby overcome most delays with early intervention.

Speak to your paediatrician to receive an examination on your child if you are concerned about the child’s development.

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