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4-month-old baby development

Do you have, or soon have a 4-month-old baby? Love it?

Many 4-month-old babies are quite easy to take care of.

They sleep pretty well, they eat less often, cry less and they can entertain themselves for a little while.

Their stomachs don’t hurt as much anymore and even babies who have had colic are often better by now.

4-month-old babies are happy kids! Enjoy this phase. Tougher times will come!

All About the 4-Month-Old Baby

4 Months Baby Milestones

Here are the common developmental milestones for 4-month-old babies.

Physical Development

Most babies at this age have enough strength to balance their head if sitting on your lap.

The 4-month-old baby is also likely to be able to support himself on his whole arms when lying on his tummy. Some can even push up so that they lean only on their hands.

However, since nowadays most children sleep on their backs to minimize the risk of SIDS, studies indicate that it now takes longer for the average baby to develop enough strength to push himself up on his elbows and arms. They simply don’t practice as much as before.

Sometime around four months, most babies’ hand-eye coordination has developed enough to the point where the baby really can grab things intentionally. Everything will go into his mouth!

Now you must make sure that he can’t get ahold of things that may be harmful to suck on or swallow. With this new ability, your baby might have a period now when he is quite content with playing on his own for a while, either in the baby gym or with his own hands or feet.

Yes – some four-month-old babies are strong enough to be able to lift their feet high enough to be able to play with them or they’ll simply chase their feet while sitting up. My youngest didn’t do any of this at 4 months; he was much more interested in observing his surroundings.

Social Development

Language development continues. Some 4-month-old babies will start making different kinds of sounds, practicing different vowels and possibly also some consonants. My youngest baby said a very clear “mama” at 4.5 months, of course not knowing what he said.

Sleep development – I read everywhere that babies around 4 months sleep through the night. My personal experience (my own as well as talking to a lot of other mothers) is that they don’t at all!

Well, some babies do, but it is also quite common that babies wake up more frequently at around 4 months old, because they are getting hungrier. So don’t despair if your baby does not sleep through the night.

Continue with your sleep routines, and discuss with your baby’s healthcare provider if it may be the right time to start with some solid food.

The 4-month-old baby can really laugh out loud. A wonderful sound!

Development Concerns at 4-Month-Old

If you read the above list of 4 months baby milestones and get worried because your baby is NOT yet, doing this or that, your first step is to take a de breath and relax! All babies are different and develop at their own pace.

But, of course, it is also important to not shut your eyes if your baby really is showing signs of developmental delays that might need to be addressed.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the below are signs that you should talk to your baby’s health care provider:

If your 4-month-old baby:

  • Doesn’t watch things as they move
  • Doesn’t smile at people
  • Can’t hold the head steady
  • Doesn’t coo or make sounds
  • Doesn’t bring things to mouth
  • Doesn’t push down with legs when feet are placed on a hard surface
  • Has trouble moving one or both eyes in all directions

In such case, act early so your baby can be assessed and get help if needed.

You can watch this video, which clearly shows some motor delays for 4-month-old babies.

Games To Play

4-month-old baby developmentTalk to your baby!

At around 4 months, you might notice that your baby likes to meet other people. Being at home all day long can actually become a bit boring.

Baby swim classes or baby singing or some other baby-friendly activity can be a fun way to stimulate baby  development now.

By coincidence, I also discovered that my 4-month-old baby was extremely interested in picture books. He got completely excited when he saw the bright colored pictures I was showing our toddler.

So reading books can be added to the list.

Going from lying to standing with your help (pull her arms carefully) is great fun as well as flying (you lift her high up into the air).

If not earlier, your baby has probably become ticklish by now (newborn babies are not). So tickling can be great fun. Many babies are very ticklish around their neck and thighs.

You can encourage your baby to roll over from back to stomach by holding up toys for him to reach for.

Toy Tips

With the new abilities to put everything into his mouth, your baby will enjoy all sorts of rattles, like this one. (Link to Amazon.)

Make sure they have some little part – tail, nose, or something, that can be sucked on. My children have become furious after a while when they have tried to put a too big toy into their mouths.

And whatever you do, don’t cut off the little piece of cloth with washing instructions (unless, of course, it might fall off). Chances are your baby will love these little pieces of cloth even more than the actual toy!

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4-Month-Old Baby on Video

In this video with 4-month-old babies, you can see some gorgeous babies reaching for things and trying to taste them, actually enjoying some tummy time and having fun playing with their moms. Typical 4-month-olds!

Where would you like to go next?
You can check out all posts about 4-month-olds here or read about other baby months:

The 3-month-old baby | The 5-month-old baby

What is YOUR 4-month-old baby like? I’d love to hear! Leave a comment below! <3

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