You are already halfway through your baby’s first year. This should be an exciting time for you and your family. This age can come with a wider variety of challenges. As your baby becomes more developed, he or she will be able to interact more with the environment around him or her. This also means that you have to keep a close eye on your child for safety purposes. When you go to the pediatrician for the 6-month checkup, what are a few things you should expect? What are a few developmental milestones your child should be hitting? Here are some important points you should keep in mind.
Weight and Size at 6 Months
Babies continue to grow rapidly around this time. The average girl baby weighs just over 16 lbs. while the average male baby weighs about 17.5 lbs. Remember that these are averages. Your pediatrician will review the growth curve of your child with you. It is important that your child continue to track along his or her natural growth curve. Keep in mind that babies at this age are still going to be measured in length instead of height because they cannot yet stand up. As long as they are tracking along his or her own growth curve, he or she is doing just fine.
Development at 6 Months
At this age, most babies should be able to sit unsupported. Keep in mind there is a range of ages over which babies typically develop this skill. If your baby is able to sit without support at this stage, he or she is on track.
There are a number of other major developmental milestones as well. These include:
- Your child should be able to bear weight on his or her legs. If you hold them upright, he or she should naturally extend for the floor.
- They may be showing signs of getting into a crawling position, getting ready to move about on his or her own.
- They should be able to lift his or her head off the ground during tummy time.
- Your child may be able to pull himself or herself up into a standing position.
These are just a few important milestones you may notice at this age.
Feeding Schedule at 6 Months
The vast majority of your child’s nutrition should still be coming from breastmilk or formula. They will probably be consuming between 30 and 36 oz of breastmilk and/or formula per day. Your child should not require a feeding overnight anymore, as he or she should get close to sleeping through the night. His or her stomach is also big enough that he or she does not need to eat during the night.
The biggest thing to remember at this age is that your child is probably going to start eating solids if they have not already. Your child should be eating a few tablespoons of cereal, fruit, and vegetables per day. It is important for your child to get a well-rounded diet. As your kid eats more solid food, his or her consumption of breast milk and formula will gradually start to decrease. As you introduce new foods to your child’s diet, it is important for you to introduce them one at a time. Give each new food a few days before you add another new one. This is important because they develop an allergic reaction, you want to know what the most recent food was, so you can alert your pediatrician.
Bowel Movements at 6 Months
Your child should continue to have wet diapers after every feeding. They should have approximately one stool diaper per day. If your child goes a few days without having a stool diaper, this is probably okay; however, if this persists for several days in a row, you may want to reach out to your pediatrician to learn more. Keep in mind that the nature of your child’s diapers may also change during this age. As you introduce solid food to your child’s diet, his or her diapers may begin to change as well.
An Overview of Coughing
Your child may develop a cough around this time, particularly if it is winter. If they develop a cough, there are a few possible reasons why. For example, they may have a viral infection. Or your child may be suffering from seasonal allergies. Your child may also be coughing because he or she is about to spit up. Do not hesitate to reach out to your pediatrician with any questions or concerns.
Sleep Schedule at 6 Months
Your child should be able to sleep through the night by this age. Children of this age should sleep approximately 11 hours during the night. They will probably take two naps during the day as well. The total duration of these naps should total between 3 and 4 hours. If your child wakes up during the night, he or she is probably used to being fed. If your child learns that he or she is not going to be fed during the night, he or she has a better chance of sleeping through the night. This is probably going to be better for all parties involved because everyone else gets to sleep through the night as well.
Major Emotional Milestones at 6 Months
Your child is getting older, so he or she is going to require more stimulation during the day. For example, you may want to expose your child to toys that will test gross and fine motor skills in addition to social and language skills. You may want to challenge your child to stack certain toys or fit objects into certain holes. You may also want to give your child toys that light up, roll around, and make music. That will encourage your child to try to go after the toy. Your child may also enjoy books and boards with lots of colors that will challenge his or her vision.
Have Questions, or Need an Appointment for Your Baby? Contact North Texas Medical Center Today!
These are just a few of the many milestones you should expect at this age. You need to make sure your child has appropriate medical care, and that is where we can assist you. We are North Texas Medical Center, and we always place the needs of your child first. It would be our honor to make sure your child is taken care of and to make sure your child is growing and developing appropriately. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can assist you.