Your baby as a 6- to 7-month-old is one of the most enjoyable stages of babyhood. She is laughing at the silliest sound or facial expression you make. So take advantage and keep playing, talking, and interacting! Try calling her name, she might know it by now as well. And, she’s getting better at rolling over and sitting on her own (she may be able to sit on her high chair). This age is also when babies start on solids.
With guidance from Special Education teacher Joji Reynes-Santos, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Ages and Stages Questionnaires, a tool used by pediatricians for screening a child's development, below are developmental milestones most babies reach by 6 to 7 months old.
But first, take note:
- Wait until the end of 6 months before observing your baby for his 6-month-old milestones. Every child is different. Some reach their milestones earlier, and others a little later.
- Have you been practicing tummy time? The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends tummy time to babies as soon as possible. Make sure your child practices it a few times a day when she’s awake and playful.
- Make sure your baby is well-rested and fed. Some of the items on this list may require you and your baby to engage in simple activities. Fussiness may make it harder to get accurate observations.
- Talk to your child’s doctor at every well-baby visit about the milestones your child has reached. Always consult with a pediatrician who will address your concerns and be able to inform you on what to expect next.
What most babies can do at 6 to 7 months old:
- rolls over in both directions, from her tummy to back and her back to tummy
- begins to sit with support from her hands, and then without
- when standing (with a parent's help), can support her weight using legs and might bounce
- reaches for and grasps objects
Cognitive or mental development
- brings objects to her mouth
- shows curiosity about things and tries to get things that are out of reach
- looks around at things nearby
- transfers objects from one hand to the other
- may be able to find partially hidden objects
Social and emotional development
- enjoys playing with others, especially with mom and dad
- begins to know if someone is a stranger
- responds to other people's emotions and expressions, and often seems happy
- likes to look at self in the mirror, may coo or smile at her reflection
Language and communication development
- responds to own name, looks in your direction when you call her
- responds to sounds a parent makes by making sounds of her own
- makes sounds to show joy and displeasure
- begins to babble with consonants, like “ba”, “ma”, and “da”
Children develop at different rates, says the AAP. There may be nothing to worry about. However, it’s important you still bring up any red flag concerns with a pediatrician. According to the CDC and the AAP, talk to your child’s doctor if your 6- to 7-month-old baby:
- muscles seem to be very stiff
- muscles seem to be very loose (like a rag doll)
- doesn't respond to sounds
- doesn't try to grab things in reach
- doesn't roll overhas difficulty bringing objects to her mouth
- shows no affection for caregivers
- doesn't babble
- doesn't laugh or make squaling sounds