Baby Calendar Month 6
Six-month olds are in love. They are in love with their parents, their favorite others whether siblings, grandparents or other loved ones, and the world around them. Consider your six-month old to be a scientist, testing everything he sees with all the powers he possesses. He will likely explore with his mouth first, then touch and drop and listen all the while looking intently. He'll been listening to any clues you give about how to use the object, and whether you label the object for him. He's starting to learn the words for things around him, even though it will be quite awhile before he can verbalize those words himself. Go ahead and tell him what things are when baby is encountering them. Narrate your day together to build that receptive vocabulary.
Babies this age love themselves too. They will grab and suck body parts, and then do the same with yours, understanding now that you two are separate creatures. They love hearing their own voices and names, and enjoy watching their reflections in mirrors even though they don't quite grasp that the image is their own.
While baby has become quite the explorer, look for increased locomotion to accompany this exploration. Baby may get onto hands and knees and sorta of wobble about, may drop onto her belly and creep perhaps backwards at first. She may sit for longer periods, correcting her own balance with her hands. She may become quite the skilled roller, and find a way to get where she desires using a combination of all these locomotion skills.
If baby has begun to take baby cereals over the last several weeks, you might want to expand his diet to now include some tasty but mild vegetables. Carrots or squash are good ones to begin with.
Babies with a high likelihood of developing food allergies should not be given certain food items until later. Those at risk include those with close family relatives with asthma,eczema, allergies and of course, food allergies especially.
While you may want to introduce vegetables and fruits at six months or later, avoid legumes or veggies like peas or beans until other vegetables have been successfully eaten without reactions. A month or two after vegetables are in baby's diet, you can introduce fruit but avoid citrus fruits.
No honey for any babies until one year of age, as it can be deadly. Wait until baby's first birthday to include cow's milk, berries, citrus fruits or juices. Wait until age 2 for wheat, chocolate or egg whites, and until age 3 for peanut butter, shellfish or fish. Wait until age 4 to offer peanuts or other tree nuts due to choking hazards as well as allergy issues.
Always introduce one food at a time, giving it to baby several times before adding any new food items. Look for any signs of food allergies such as a itchy eyes, rash, bloating, gas, diarrhea or unusual fussiness following feedings. Start with a tablespoon, gradually increasing to 4 to 5 tablespoons twice daily.
Well Baby Visit
Babies generally have a visit scheduled with their pediatrician this month. You can discuss baby's growth, feeding habits and sleeping schedule with the doctor. Write down any questions or concerns you may have.
Between 6 and 18 months, infants get their Hepatitis B and IPV or polio vaccines. Talk to your doctor about when you should do this. Also infants may be a yearly flu shot starting at 6 months. You'll definitely want to ask your doctor about when baby should receive their first flu shot.
Tips for Mom and Dad
Since baby is becoming rather mobile by now, and if not will be quite soon, it's critical that parents babyproof again. Look at everything from baby's perspective and remember that anything baby comes into contact with is most likely to get mouthed. Make sure plants are out of reach, and get poisonous plants out of your home all together to be most safe.
If you have pets, get their food out of baby's radar and reach unless you really want baby eating Fido's food or lapping at Kitty's water. Kitty's litter box needs to be beyond baby's exploration space as well. Use baby gates to close off certain areas of the home.
Keep carpets and floors cleaned and vacuumed or expect baby to do it for you, remembering that she'll probably eat anything in her grasp. Baby's vision has sharpened considerably and he'll make a bee line for that bit of string, errant paper clip or month-old raisin.
As baby's world opens up, she'll also be using it for balance. Make sure all furniture is secure and baby can't topple it over on herself should she pull up on it.
When baby can explore freely and safely he has the best opportunities for growth and learning while you can rest assured he's out of harm's way.
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