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Stages of Development

Babies develop at different stages – below we have provided some general guidance on when to expect your baby to smile, crawl, teeth, walk, and talk. These important stages in your baby’s development are all signs that your little pride and joy is ready to take on the big wide world as a cheeky toddler!

When do babies smile?

You may have heard stories of people’s babies smiling as they are in their parent’s arms for the first time – but in actual fact, your baby probably won’t show their first smile until they are around six to eight weeks old. You can encourage your baby’s facial expressions by experimenting with your own – frowning, smiling, and laughing where your baby can see will help them to mirror what you do!

When do babies crawl?

Your baby will learn to crawl anywhere between 6 to 9 months old, being able to crawl properly from 9 to 12 months old. Placing your baby on their tummy may help them to crawl sooner, where they will push their upper body up, eventually using their legs and feet to push themselves along.

When do babies start teething?

Babies will start to teeth anywhere around 6 months of age. Teething is an uncomfortable and often painful experience for your baby. Signs to look out for include drooling and chewing or gnawing more often. You can help alleviate the symptoms of teething by purchasing teething rings and plastic toys for your baby to chew on.

When do babies start walking?

Your baby will start to take their first steps between 9 and 12 months old, with the ability to walk independently by the time they are 16-18 months old. Once your baby starts to grab hold of chair and table legs, and sofas to pull themselves up from a sitting position, it won’t be too long until they learn to take their first steps!

When do babies start talking?

The age at which babies start talking can vary. If your baby still hasn’t formed a full word by the time they are 18 months of age, this is not a concern you need to worry about. What’s important is to focus on how your baby begins to develop sounds and speech. From around 2 to 3 months your baby will begin to form letters and babbling “bah bah bah!” with a wider variety of these sounds increasing around 6 to 7 months.

You can encourage speech by forming words that are easy for your baby to mimic – ‘muh’ ‘buh’ and ‘bah’ sounds are usually simple enough for your baby to be able to pick up on easily.