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Intelligence development in children during the first six months

Sivakeerthana R.S, Child Development Therapist, SUT Hospital, Pattom, Trivandrum

Every child is unique in their own way. However, child growth and development follow a sequential pattern. Parents need to make sure that their child is having age appropriate mental and physical development. For this, parents should be aware about the developmental milestones child need to achieve.

There are mainly four domains in child development: Gross motor development, Fine motor development, Language development and Social development. Gross motor skills are abilities that let the child to do tasks that involve large muscles in their legs and arms. Fine motor skills are the usage of smaller muscles of hand and wrists.

Language development starts with baby’s first sound which eventually develops into words and sentences as the child’s age advances. Social development is the process by which child learns to interact with others around them.

Mental and physical development of children from 0 to 6 months

0 – 2 months

Every baby starts to look around and recognise mother from their initial day of life itself. At this time, the baby can see black and white colours. Objects about eight inches (20cm) away are visible to the baby during this period. By this time baby starts smiling and achieve the first developmental mile stone. Baby also begins to make its first sounds.

3 – 4 months

Baby follows objects moving over his eyes from one side to the other and begins to turn head towards the direction of sound. The baby tries to lift its head and chest while lying on its back. By four months of age, babies achieve head holding to keep their head partially upright while lying down. The baby laughs out loud and starts to play with his hands.

5 – 6 months

The baby learns to roll over. He reaches out and grasps things and even pays attention to small things. Baby smiles when seeing his own reflection in the mirror. By the sixth month, he tries to lift the neck and chest and learn to sit with the help of others. The child begins to fear strangers. Begins to watch others and make sounds by imitating them.

Up to this time, the baby should be exclusively breastfed and after six months solid foods can be started one at a time, along with breast feeding.