From the moment you hear their first cry to the day they take their first steps and beyond, there are few precious moments in life that rival the highly anticipated developmental milestones of baby’s first year. As a parent, it is important to know what is coming — and when — so you can ensure you’ll enjoy every minute, and gently guide your baby along the way. So, get out your calendar and keep reading for some of the most important baby developmental milestones and when to expect them.

0 – 3 Months

After your baby is born, they continue to undergo rapid developmental changes. The first 3 months of life are when your baby is just starting to get used to the world. From uncurling their fingers to lifting their head 45 degrees, even small changes are a big deal. Keep an eye out at around the end of month one as your infant starts focusing on objects that are 8-12 inches away (just like your eyes)! By the end of the second month, you are likely to find that they can already start tracking objects with their little peepers. While your baby is sure to be crying, at around 2 months, babies start making other noises and can even start recognizing voices they know. Perhaps the most anticipated baby developmental milestone of these months is the first smile, which starts at around 2 months old. We’re sure you can’t wait!

4 – 6 Months

Once you see a baby’s first smiles, soon to follow is their sweet, bubbling laughter. You can anticipate this at around 4 months old, and we know you won’t be able to get enough! Perhaps just as exciting for tired parents, babies begin to sleep through the night at around 3-4 months old. Most babies get 6 to 8 continuous hours by 4-6 months old. Around the same time, at around 5-6 months old, babies will start sitting up with support of hands or objects. As month 5 turns to 6, babies start teething and can begin to carefully start consuming solid foods. You might also notice that by the end of month 6, your baby starts opening their mouth for a spoon, drinking from a cup as you assist, and starts holding their bottle. Things are starting to get a little bit easier!

7 – 9 Months

Now, your baby is getting the hang of moving! At around 7-9 months, babies can start to sit up on their own without support. On top of that, you’ll see them make their way across the room! Some babies crawl while others prefer to scoot around. If your baby is a crawler that usually starts by 9 months. At the end of month 8, babies typically start turning their head away when they are done eating. Besides moving, by 9 months, babies start to respond to their own name and might also start to show separation anxiety when their parents are not around. 

10 Months – 1 Year

The developmental milestones for 1 year olds are often the most anxiously awaited! As babies are getting better at grabbing things in their hands they are also starting to feed themselves finger foods at around 9-12 months old. It is especially important to take extra care of household safety because they’re going to put more than just food in their mouths! Another exciting event is when your baby starts to wave goodbye at around 9 -11 months old. This happens when they begin to understand the language connection between saying “bye” or “bye bye” and the gesture of waving.  At around 1 year they also often start to shake their heads to say “no.” By 10 -12 months they start recognizing their own reflection in the mirror. Even more exciting, babies are often able to begin standing by 12 months and maybe even taking steps with support. At around 9-13 months babies often start taking steps unassisted. And of course, at around one year old, babies start to say their first words. For new parents, it is hard to imagine anything more exciting!

At Coastal Kids Pediatrics, we are passionate about helping your child grow as happily and healthily as possible. While there are usually plenty of milestones of baby’s first year, every child develops at their own pace. If you have any questions or concerns about your baby’s developmental milestones, or overall health, your knowledgeable Coastal Kids Pediatrician is by your side. To make an appointment visit us at