The early stages and ages of a child's life are important for their health and development. This article explains normal children's milestones and other areas of concern.
The series of physical, mental, and emotional changes that occur in a child from birth to the beginning of adulthood is referred to as child development. A child grows from being dependent on their parents or guardians to independent living during this stage. Prenatal events and genetic variables by genes passed down from parents have a big impact on a child's development. Environmental factors and the child's learning capacity also have an impact.
Child development covers entire skills that a child masters and goes through over their life span including development in various aspects like:
Cognition – the ability to solve and learn various problems.
Social Interaction and Emotional Regulation – interacting with other people and mastering self-control.
Sensory Awareness – the registration of sensory information from different situations for use.
Speech and Language – understanding and using different languages, reading, listening, and communicating.
Physical skills – fine motor skills and gross motor skills which include using fingers and whole-body skills.
Observing and tracking a child's development is a crucial tool for ensuring that they reach developmental milestones. Developmental milestones serve as a helpful guideline for optimal growth.
By comparing a kid's developmental growth at specific age milestones to these arbitrary periods, we can assure that the kid is on track for his or her age. If not, checking developmental milestones might aid in the early discovery of any developmental setbacks. Pediatricians often do this examination on newborns and toddlers, as well as during preschool and school term competency assessments.
Early detection and, if necessary, early intervention and treatment for developmental problems can help to minimize the impact of these developmental hiccups on a child's skill development and, as a result, their confidence serves as an indicator of a possible future diagnosis.
Developmental milestone checklists or charts serve as a guide to what is considered normal for a given age group and can be used to identify any areas where a kid may be behind. It is crucial to remember that while child growth follows a predictable pattern, each child's developmental journey is unique, and the time frames when they reach numerous developmental milestones vary according to the child.
The important milestones and their approximate ages are:
1) Up to Three Months:
Turns the head in the direction of the sound.
Recognizes familiar faces and smiles back.
Follows moving objects.
Watch others' faces with interest.
Raises head and chest while lying on the stomach.
Brings hands to the mouth.
Tries to grab dangling objects.
Begins to babble and imitate some sounds.
2) Up to Six Months:
Responds to other people’s emotions.
Enjoys games, especially peekaboo.
Struggles and reaches out to objects.
Uses voice to express pleasure and displeasure.
Interested in mirror images.
Respond to his or her name.
Babbles chain of sounds.
Roll both the ways (front to back and back to front).
Sits with and then without support.
3) Up to One Year:
Pulls up to stand and walks holding furniture.
Tries to imitate during play (like winking when you wink or clapping when you clap).
Explores objects - finds hidden objects and begins to use objects correctly (drinking from a cup, brushing hair, and dialing numbers).
Uses simple gestures like shaking head to say ‘NO’ or waving to say ‘BYE BYE.’
May speak single words like “Mama” and “Dada.”
Cries when mother or father leaves.
Teething mostly starts with the incisors.
4) Up to Two Years:
Excited about the company of other children.
Begins to sort by shapes and colors.
Follow simple instructions.
Recognizes the names of familiar people.
Walks without help.
Pretends like talking on a toy phone.
Points out at objects when you name them (like toys or photos).
Imitates others, especially adults and older children.
Uses two to four-word sentences.
Repeats words overheard in conversation.
Pulls toys behind him or her while walking.
Teething - Canines and molars appear.
5) Up to Three Years:
Imitates adults and playmates.
Shows affection for playmates or friends.
Sorts objects by shape and colors and matches objects to pictures.
Plays make-belief with dolls, animals, and people (like feeding a doll).
Uses small sentences to communicate with others.
Expresses a wide range of emotions.
Walks upstairs and downstairs using alternate feet.
Runs easily and pedals tricycles.
Start to make friends.
6) Up to Four Years:
Follow three-step commands like washing your hands or combing your hair.
Draws circles and squares.
Speaks in sentences of five to six words.
The child speaks clearly enough for outsiders to understand.
Names colors and can count.
Shares things with other children.
Knows the difference between boys and girls.
Enjoys humor (like laughs at silly faces and voices).
Brushes his or her teeth.
Dresses and undresses without help, except for shoelaces.
Pretends by role-playing.
These are some ideal criteria to measure the development of the baby. But as per my experience, many children show variations in them. For example, they can start teething as early as six months or may not have their first teeth until the completion of one year or more. Many children take longer than usual to start standing or walking or may start walking even before the completion of one year. Some of them begin speaking words around 12 to 14 months and use sentences as early as 26 to 30 months of age, while some can take even three or more years to develop the gift of speech. Usually, the delay in dentition or speech or walking comes with concern, and parents start panicking. They just become obsessed with one milestone, which is delayed while they completely overlook the general intelligence of the baby.
It is observed in a nuclear family, where the attending members are mostly one or two. As the child learns everything at an early age by replicating the actions of the attending person, it becomes a very limited opportunity to learn new things. To improve speech, it does not require any special therapy mostly. Just talk to them more, and let the child play with other children. It is observed that the child who speaks late, suddenly starts learning it very fast once they join the school. It can also be helped by homeopathic medicines like Belladonna, Tuberculinum, Phosphorus, Calc Carb, etc. They are completely safe, and they have multiple benefits as not only the targeted milestone is improved, but it mostly helps to build the defense mechanism of the body, which nowadays is hard to find.
Walking also is the same. Children who are pampered, do not have to reach for anything or the mother and father are overprotective and do not let them explore their world without support, or the child is physically a bit lazy or has a weak bony and muscular structure, takes a bit longer to learn walking. It does not always mean that the child has any significant disease or developmental disorders. Always correlate it with other age-specific developments. In such conditions, homeopathic medicines like Calc Carb (chubby with constipation), Calc Phos (fast-growing and emaciated), Baryta Carb, etc., can be game-changing remedies.
Delayed teething is one of the major concerns of the parents. The teething chart helps to understand the time it takes for the teeth to erupt, but it varies with each child due to various factors. The most common ailments the child suffers while teething are loose motion, vomiting, fever, irritability, etc. As children weigh a lot less, a few loose motions or vomits can lead to severe dehydration, and the child can collapse. So never wait till it goes out of hand. Do not experiment with home remedies, as they mostly irritate the gastric mucosa. Instead, consult a doctor and get the right treatment. In such instances, homeopathic medicines like Aethusa Cynapium (intolerance of milk), Chamomilla (very irritable with green stool), Arsenic Alb, and Calcarea Carb are very helpful and instantly relieve symptoms. It also improves other factors for a healthy life.
Instead of taking marketed patent products of homeopathic formulations, it is always beneficial to take proper homeopathic treatment and consultations if there are any problems with child development and care. Most patients avoid consultations, as it is easy to reach a store and get medicines found on the internet. The major cause of failure of homeopathic treatment is over-the-counter prescriptions or combination prescriptions. The benefits of taking correct homeopathic medicines reach quite high and irreplaceable by random suggestions. So it is my earnest request to all lovely parents who take good care, enjoy the child’s most precious moments unaltered, and take necessary guidance, help, and treatment from a qualified person only. Avoid taking random suggestions as they arise from myths more than knowledge.
Last reviewed at:
19 Apr 2022 - 6 min read
Query: Hello doctor, This is with regards to my daughter who is 2 years and eight months old. I have noticed that she is slow in activities. She is very laid back and relaxed. I have a feeling that she has an imbalance of vata, pitta, and kapha. I mean if she can be either low on pitta or vata as per my un... Read Full »
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