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Your 5 month old – baby development guide

Baby Development Guide - five months old

Wow – can you believe your baby has been in your life for nearly half a year! Hard to believe there is still so much more to come …

How is baby going?

This month you might be starting to think about when you’ll introduce your baby to solid food. While you think about that your baby will be happily eating their own feet (you’ve probably noticed that your baby can grab them now when lying on their back).

Your baby is now starting to realise that you are not two parts of the same thing, but are in fact separate people. This can bring about some separation anxiety and your baby might start to cry when approached by strangers … or by a grandparent he hasn’t seen in a while …and might become upset when you leave the room.

Sleep

At this age most babies will be having three naps during the day and longer blocks of sleep at night too – waking up for feeds overnight is still normal. Your baby probably cannot stay awake for much longer than 2 hours at a time.

It is recommended that a five-month-old baby has between 12-15 hours of sleep over the course of 24 hours.

Feed

The current recommendation is that babies should start solid food when they are developmentally ready, around six months. There are a few ways to make sure that your baby is ready for solid food including: they have good head and neck control, they’re able to sit upright with support and they no longer have the ‘extrusion reflex’’, which is the reflex that makes them put their tongue forward and upwards when feeding, as if sucking, and it stops them from being able to take food from a spoon. For more information read our article on when your baby should start solid food.

You might also want to start thinking about buying a sippy cup. When your baby starts solids you should offer cool, boiled water with each meal. Check out parents’ reviews of sippy cups for babies to help you decide which one might be best for you and your baby.

Play

Playtime is getting more exciting. If you’ve been giving your baby plenty of tummy time and free play on the floor they will probably be able to prop up on straight arms and reach out to grab toys in front.  Your baby might be able to sit momentarily, using their hands to prop forward and could soon be rolling in either direction on purpose. Your baby will be putting everything in her mouth plus shaking, banging and throwing things.

Health

More vaccinations are due when your baby is six months old. Make an appointment with your GP or your local immunisation clinic.

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How are you going?

Have you ever put your phone in the fridge? Drifted off halfway through a sentence because you couldn’t remember what you were talking about? Walk around looking for your keys, only to discover them in your hands? If yes, then you might be suffering from baby brain! Don’t worry, you’ll feel like your old self soon enough!

If you are constantly frazzled though – it might be time for some self-care. This article has some great tips for practising self-care when you’re a busy mum.

3 things to do when your baby is 5 months old

Please note: All babies are different, these are generic guides and aren’t a substitute for professional medical advice. If you have any concerns, don’t hesitate to contact your health care provider.

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