(Image source: http://www.dailybackgrounds.com/laughing-baby/)
It is a thrill for parents to see a baby milestone, whether it be their little one’s first smile, lifts the head, or first sounds. But what are these milestones and when do infants reach them? And how can you tell if your little one is just a late bloomer or is in fact delayed? Read on.
Lifting the Head
When do infants learn to lift their heads? The answer, in fact, depends on the baby. But experts agree that including some supervised tummy time into playtime helps little ones develop the neck, chest and arm muscles that give them the opportunity to lift their heads independently and use their arms to support the upper body. Those very same muscles play a role in other significant motor skills too – reaching, sitting, crawling, and scooching, to name a few. And that first, lovely blink of surprise (“Hey, Mummy, I can see you!”) from a tiny tot learning to lift his head from his playmat is pure newborn charm.
Your Baby’s First Smile
The first time your little one smiles at you, all the sleepless nights, exhaustion, morning sickness and newborn stress will instantly seem worth it, a million times over. There is just nothing sweeter than a newborn’s face lighting up with happy recognition or joy. Smiling is also a welcome sign of infant’s growing social skills, now that your little one is making the transition from sweet sleepy kitten to a sociable, irresistible little superstar.
Wait — what was that sound that just came from your baby? It was not a wail, or a burp, or an explosion from his back end (did you start to think that was all you would ever hear from him?). The lovely sound you may have just heard is a coo!
When babies begin talking, they tend to have a rapt audience: There is nothing funnier or more adorable than an infant learning how to make his first sounds. Your little mastermind will learn to talk in stages, starting with vowel sounds, sighs, grunts, coos, and gurgles, the first steps to those first actual words. But it all starts with your little one’s special wordless vocabulary, your munchkin’s unique native language.
Your Baby’s First Laugh
It’s one of the great parenting moments you have been waiting for — and once you hear your little one’s first laugh, you will not be able to get enough of the adorable sound, whether it is a chortle, a chuckle or a full tummy laugh. Your tiny tot has been experimenting with making sounds from his first month, from coos to gurgles to deep sighs. Laughter is his next (hilarious) step in learning to communicate.
Your Baby’s First Bath
Until baby starts getting down and soiled on the ground, a daily bath is not needed. In fact, the infant will only really need a wash two or three times per week — at first a sponge bath, until her umbilical cord stump heals (about two to four weeks after delivery). Then a baby bathtub, and eventually a tub bath (when the baby can sit up on his own and outgrows the infant tub). You may want to do it more frequent because there is nothing cuter than seeing an infant splashing in the bathtub, soapy suds dotting his chubby folds.
Click here to learn more about your little one’s first’s, when to expect them and what not to worry about.