The First Year
Children grow at a rapid rate during their first two years of life. During this time, they also hit many physical and cognitive milestones. It is vital for us parents to foster a healthy environment for our children to have the best start to life. During this two part blog series, we will dive into the different stages of development and talk about how we can help our children grow and develop optimally.
During the first few months of life, babies will develop new movements quickly. Most of these new skills are considered “motor development”.
In the first couple weeks, your baby is not be able to control many of their movements. As they begin to develop more physical abilities, motions may still be jerky. But don’t blink, they learn super fast! Your baby will start to develop neck control. They will move their head from side to side, but will still need help supporting their head.
Your baby’s nervous system is somewhat matured by now. With improved muscle control, movement becomes more fluid and you’ll have a wiggly baby! Most babies at this age can lift their head up while lying on their tummies. Giving your baby consistent “tummy time” is a great way to help build strength in her neck, back and buttock. Typically babies are too young to actually crawl, but your baby may try or begin to push up from a lying position.
Your baby’s strength and coordination with motions is improving. Your baby’s arm and leg movements continue to become smoother. You may notice your baby trying to rollover. At this age they are a bit young, however, some babies will start rolling from tummy to back.
During your baby’s next four months, they will begin to put their fingers and thumbs together in a mitten grip to pick up things. They will also learn how to transfer objects from one hand to another, turn them from side to side and upside down. As physical coordination improves, your baby will discover parts of their body that they never knew existed. One of your baby’s favorite things to do while lying on their back is to put their toes in their mouth. As they continue to explore their body parts, they’ll discover many new sensations. For example, your baby may curl their toes and stroke the carpet when their feet are placed on the floor. Soon they’ll discover they can use their feet and legs to bounce up and down. Like I said before, don’t blink! These are all preparations for the next major milestones: crawling and standing.
From eight to twelve months of age, your baby will become increasingly mobile. Crawling with set in and your baby will be unstoppable for there. Being able to move from place to place will give your child a delicious sense of power and control—their first real taste of physical independence. Another huge milestone that will thrill both you and baby is standing. You will watch your baby begin to grab onto the edge of furniture and pull themselves up. So make sure to keep hazardous items out of reach!
How We Can Help
If you notice your child is struggling with some of these skills, consider seeking out a chiropractor near you. Chiropractic care can help with many health issues in infants. The birthing process, whether it is a vaginal or cesarean birth, causes a lot of twisting and pulling on a baby’s head. This can cause a lot of trauma to a newborn’s head and neck, including spinal misalignments. Spinal misalignments can lead to a myriad of health issues in your child’s life such as colic, chronic ear infections, trouble latching and cognitive delays.
Stay tuned for our second part of this three part blog series to learn more about the Terrible Two’s and Threenager stage!