Milestones: 0-3 Months
After you bring your baby home it will seem like he is able to do something new everyday. You wait anxiously for his quiet alert period and look constantly for a new milestone. During the first three months there are a lot of milestones your baby will probably reach. These include rolling over, lifting his head, pushing up, smiling, laughing and cooing.
Your Baby Is Lifting His Head!
Some baby’s are born with neck muscles strong enough to lift from birth. Many times you will first notice your baby lifting his neck when you cradle him on your chest in your hospital room. If your baby can not lift his head from birth, your pediatrician will probably not be concerned as it isn’t something that a baby SHOULD be able to do from the time they are born.
In order for your baby to strengthen those neck muscles he will need lost of tummy time. Whether he gets it on the floor or on your chest, tummy time is essential to your baby learning to lift his head. He will want to move and look around, and he will quickly learn that the way to do that is through turning his head. This is a great accomplishment that should be celebrated for your baby.
He Can Roll!
A baby’s first sense of independence is rolling over. At first he will only be able to roll over from one side to the other, but eventually he will be able to roll from front to back, and back to the front again. In most cases your baby will probably get bored with rolling over before he discovers that he can get somewhere by doing it, but once your baby is rolling easily, you should always be sure to be within arms reach so that he doesn’t get into something that could be dangerous for him.
At some point during time it will look like your baby is doing pushups. This may start in the first 3 months, however in many cases it doesn’t start till after your babies three month birthday. Your baby will discover his arms, and strengthen them during tummy time, eventually getting into a push up position where he looks like he is ready to go.
Pushups are an important step in your baby’s effort to learn to crawl which will come later. Your baby will also discover that they can roll over from a pushup position and may think that this is a blast. If your baby laughs, laugh along with him!
At some point during the first three months your baby’s gassy grins should lead way to full on, intentional smiles. These smiles will probably range from curved up lips to mouth wide-open grins that will melt your heart. For babies that have dimples, this is the time when they will really become noticeable.
Parents often wait for this, and consider it the biggest milestone of the first part of their baby’s life. You will notice recognition from your baby when he looks at you and grins so big that even the worst of days are made ok for mom and dad.
Shortly after your baby starts to smile, you should start to hear another noise coming from your baby. Following the grins come the giggles. The little chuckles that occur when you are playing with your baby, or when your baby hears you laugh is music to most parents’ ears. Even hearing mom or dad laugh can bring laughter to your baby’s mouth. As your baby perfects the giggling, it will turn into belly laughs that will be impossible to resist by anyone nearby. After all, laughter is contagious.
It isn’t a bird outside of your window, it is your baby! Until now your baby’s only form of communication was to cry. Normally, during these first three months of life you baby will begin to make other noises that sound an awful lot like coos. Your baby will make these sounds when he is happy or wants your attention when you are near, hopefully cutting down on the crying that you hear everyday. When you respond to these sounds it will show your baby that they are doing something good, and your babies language will continue to develop over the next few months and years.
These milestones are generally done in the first three months, however it is best to remember that every baby is different and every baby reaches milestones at a different rate. If your baby seems ahead or behind his peers and you are concerned about it, be sure to ask his pediatrician during his next well-check.
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