Your baby's development, stage by stage
Bringing your new baby home is a special event. And over the next 6 months, you'll have many more milestones in your baby's development to treasure. From that first smile to that first spoonful, this article tells you what you can expect and what to look forward to.
Now that you can change nappies with your eyes closed and have mastered the first stage of weaning, discover what's coming up over the next few months in your baby's development. From exploring the world on all fours and making those first words, to taking on life as a toddler.
Your first breastfeed with your newborn happens as soon as is possible after birth. This precious time is an opportunity to bond with your new baby and gives them ‘colostrum’.
Immediately after your baby is born, your body will already have milk ready for him to start breastfeeding. This first milk is called ‘colostrum’ and will available for 2 days after birth.
WHO strongly recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. At six months, other foods should complement. Breastfeeding is recommended for up to 2 years.
Diet & Nutrition
When it comes to making feeding decisions, try to talk all the options through as a couple, and be supportive of your partner’s wishes – even if these change after birth.
Breastmilk plays an important role in supporting the development of your baby’s immune system, helping defend them against germs and viruses.
After 6 months old, if you’d like to make your own baby food from scratch, we’ll show you how to give your baby all the nutrients they need.
Learn about the signs to look for, which foods are most likely to trigger a reaction, how and when to introduce allergenic foods safely.
For a new mum it can be worrying when your baby doesn’t seem to be feeding as well as you’d expect, or they cry for long periods of time due to colic.
Bonding & Wellbeing
After the intensity of labour, meeting your newborn baby for the first time is an overwhelming experience. You’ll be relieved, proud, amazed and sore in equal measure. Thanks to a rush of oxytocin, you’ll also be head-over-heels in love.
As a new mother, holding your baby close for the first time can be an amazing experience, as you savour the feeling of the new life lying on your tummy.
Health & Development
A baby in the first 6 months of life is completely dependent on parental care. Not only for their physical needs but also for emotional regulation and protection against stress.
Between 6 to 12 months your baby may start to express discomfort or display emotions such as anger and fear.
When it comes to introducing a sleep routine for your baby, it’s important to be realistic in your expectations. When they’re very young, they’ll simply sleep, wake and feed.
Learn about the impact of environmental factors on your baby’s sleep, and how you can encourage positive sleeping habits early on.
Different children grow at different rates. Some children grow faster than others and what is considered ‘normal’ includes a wide spectrum.