Your 4-month-old is growing more and more alert by the day. Babies at this age love to express themselves through smiles, laughs, gurgles, and coos.
This portion of WebMD’s month-by-month guide describes a few of the baby milestones you can expect your child to reach at four months.
Fourth Month Baby Milestones: Growth
By month four, your baby’s weight will likely have doubled from birth. If you’re concerned that your child isn’t eating well or isn’t gaining enough weight, talk to your pediatrician.
Fourth Month Baby Milestones: Motor Skills
Your baby is becoming more dexterous and doing more with their hands. Their hands now work together to move a toy or shake a rattle. In fact, those hands will grab for just about anything within reach, including a stuffed animal, your hair, and any colorful or shiny object hanging nearby. You might want to remove any earrings or necklaces if you don’t want to experience a painful tug.
Anything your baby is able to pick up will likely end up in their mouth -- tasting is one of the ways they explore their world. It’s crucial that you don’t leave small items lying around that baby could choke on. Anything that can fit inside a toilet paper tube is too small to be within finger’s reach of your 4-month-old.
By now, your baby’s head should no longer be wobbly. Four-month-olds have pretty good head control while sitting supported, and they can hold their head and chest upright while lying on their stomach during tummy time. They also can kick and push with their feet. Some babies have even figured out how to roll from tummy to back at this point.
Fourth Month Baby Milestones: Sleep
By your baby’s fourth month, you both should be enjoying a full night’s sleep. At this age babies typically can sleep seven to eight hours in a row. Add in two naps, and baby should be sleeping a total of 14 to 16 hours a day.
Fourth Month Baby Milestones: The Senses
During the first three months, babies have a lot of trouble distinguishing color contrasts, which was why your newborn preferred bright colors and black-and-white objects. Now at four months, baby’s vision has sharpened to about 20/40. Babies at this age can pick out more subtle color contrasts, such as a red button on a red shirt. They also can see across the room, although they still prefer looking at people close-up.
Your baby’s eyes should move together smoothly and follow objects and people around the room. If you notice crossed eyes or any other vision problems, be sure to mention them to your pediatrician.
You also may notice that your baby’s eyes are starting to change color. Lighter-colored eyes may go through several changes before settling on their final shade at about six months.
Fourth Month Baby Milestones: Eating
Some pediatricians don’t recommend starting babies on solid foods until six months. But depending on your baby’s size -- bigger babies may not be satisfied with breast milk or formula alone -- and readiness, your doctor may say it’s OK to start solids at four months. Before that first feeding, make sure that your baby has good head and neck control and can sit upright with support.
Baby’s first food should be an iron-fortified rice cereal mixed with either formula or breast milk. Make the cereal very thin at first -- not much thicker than plain formula -- until your baby gets used to it. Then see how they react to taking the spoon. Babies at this age may still have a strong tongue-thrust reflex. If you put a spoon of cereal in your baby’s mouth and they push it right back out, you may need to wait a week or two before trying solids again.
Fourth Month Baby Milestones: Communication
Four-month-olds are starting to discover themselves as unique individuals. They’re also beginning to notice that the people around them respond to their actions. When your baby cries, you come over. When they drop something on the floor, you pick it up. Many babies delight in dropping the same object over and over and over again, just to watch their parents repeatedly pick it up.
Babies at this age are learning to be effective communicators. They express themselves through coos, vowel sounds such as ooh and aah, squeals, gurgles, and laughter. You’ll notice that your baby can use their face to express a wide range of emotions, from a beaming happy smile, to a crunched-up angry face, to open-mouthed surprise. Your 4-month-old is also starting to learn how to read emotions from your voice and facial expressions.
Talking to Your Pediatrician
Here are a few of the items that should be on the checklist for your 4-month well-baby pediatrician visit:
Height and weight
Hearing and vision
Before you go to the doctor’s office, make a list of any concerns you have and any questions you want to ask, and then use the list to be sure you get all the information and help you need.
Tips for Your Baby’s Fourth Month
Give your baby lots of new textures to explore, such as books like Pat the Bunny and other touch-and-feel board books.
Spend at least a few minutes reading or singing to your baby every day. They will love being in your arms and hearing the sound of your voice -- even if you can’t carry a tune.
Though your baby is not yet crawling and probably isn’t even rolling over, it’s time to start seriously thinking about childproofing. Put locks on cabinets, snap gates across stairways, and store any cleaning products or other potentially dangerous materials high up and far away from baby’s curious fingers.
Your 4-month-old baby is more alert, active, and engaging than ever. Enjoy this time as you find out more about his unique personality, and watch him build the strength and skills he needs for exciting feats like sitting, reaching, and rolling!
Baby Development Milestones
Now that you have a 4-month-old baby you may find life slightly less hectic as you work with some established daily routines. But, that little one is probably still keeping you on your toes, and that's to be expected! Now, and for the next few months, he's busy honing his newfound motor skills and will eventually be fully able to grasp things, roll over, and sit up on his own. The best is yet to come: Read on to find out more about what to look forward to this month.
Growth and Physical Development: Steady and Strong
Your 4-month-old baby is probably continuing his fast pace of growth (about 1 to 1 ¼ pounds per month), but remember that a steady rate of growth is more important than any specific gains in weight or length. You may want to learn more about how your pediatrician will use baby growth charts to track your baby's growth. There's a lot of cognitive and physical development taking place now, and you're probably about to start seeing more deliberate actions from your baby as he learns concepts like cause and effect.
Senses: Developing Distance Vision
The world around your baby is coming into focus, literally, as his distance vision steadily improves. He may start to recognize you and other familiar faces at a distance, and he can easily follow moving objects with his eyes from side to side. His color vision is also improving, so you may notice he seems to favor shades of red and blue. Another source of endless visual fascination for your 4-month-old baby? Himself! An unbreakable mirror is a great toy for infants this age, as they can see a wide range of colors and shapes as well as their own movements reflected back at them.
It's not only his sense of sight that's maturing, but also his language skills, thanks to improved hearing and cognitive development. He may be able to mimic some of the rhythms, tones, and patterns of some of the words you speak to him, and his cries may sound different based on his various needs. It may sound like baby babble now, but he's building a solid foundation for later speech.
Movement: Almost on a Roll
Four-month-old baby movement is all about muscle control and hand-eye coordination. If you notice more and more objects making their way to your little one's mouth, that's because with his vision improving, he's able to do this more successfully — just be careful of what's within his reach. He can probably grab and shake toys and rattles now and may soon be able to pass objects from one hand to another.
Your little guy is almost on the move! He's still working on strengthening his back and chest muscles, and he's also working on holding his head up while on his tummy. Before long he'll have the body strength to roll over from one side to the other.
4-Month-Old Baby Development Milestones
Your baby may be doing some of the following at this point:
Holding his head up independently
Bringing his hands to his mouth
Sitting up with support
Reaching for and grabbing objects of interest.
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Personality: Getting to Know Your Little One
At 4 months old, your baby's increased mobility and cognitive awareness make him even more curious about the world around him. He'll also likely become more sensitive to your tone of voice. Your soft, gentle voice soothes and reassures him, while a harsher, more angry tone will let him know something is wrong. And, he's also likely to imitate your tone in his coos and babbles. He may be able to mimic certain sounds or syllables long before he's able to form real words.
But what if your baby doesn't seem to be so easy-going or inquisitive? That's OK, too. Sometimes babies who seem to be more shy need more comfort and attention from their caregivers. Watch to see if your baby seems overwhelmed, overstimulated, or withdrawn in certain situations, and give him time to get comfortable with any new faces or new activities in his life.
How to Support Your Baby's Development
You may pick up some ways to help foster your baby's development from your pediatrician or from other parents, but here are some 4-month-old baby activities to help get you started.
To encourage visual development:
Hang a colorful mobile over his crib, making sure it is safely beyond his reach.
Let him marvel at his image and movements in a mirror.
Play peekaboo to help him learn about object permanence. He loves seeing your face appear and reappear!
To promote movement and motor control:
Do tummy time. Lifting his head and chest while on his tummy (with you close at hand) will strengthen those muscles needed for rolling over and sitting.
Practice sitting. With your support in this position, he has a better range of motion to reach for and grab objects.
Practice standing. While holding your baby under his arms, pull him into a standing position to help him work those leg muscles.
To aid language development:
Read and sing to him.
Mimic his sounds.
Respond positively when he mimics yours.
Feeding Your 4-Month-Old Baby
At 4 months old, your baby is still getting all his nutritional needs met from breast milk, formula, or a combination of the two. The best way to know when it’s time to feed your baby is to watch for signs that he is hungry. These clues include if your baby is licking his lips, sticking his tongue out, is acting fussy, or is sucking on his knuckles. As a general guideline, your baby may need about four to six ounces of milk every three to five hours. You'll still want to track your baby's wet and dirty diapers as well as stool frequency and consistency to make sure he's getting enough to eat. Your healthcare provider will also check that your baby is eating enough by tracking his growth over time.
One thing won’t change for a while yet: Your baby will need lots and lots of comfy diapers. Download the Pampers Club app, if you haven't already, to get rewards and discounts on all those diapers.
How Much Sleep Does a 4-Month-Old Baby Need?
The average 4-month-old baby needs between 12 and 16 hours of sleep every day. This may mean two daytime naps (morning and afternoon for three to four hours each) and a longer stretch of sleep at night.
Now that your baby is more active and alert during the day, winding down in the evening can be more of a challenge. Stick to a bedtime routine; you may find that a warm bath, gentle massage, rocking, or feeding may be just what he needs to help him fall asleep.
If you’re struggling with your baby’s sleep, or perhaps you're experiencing the 4-month sleep regression, check out the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™.
Co-created with pediatricians and sleep experts, this easy-to-use app includes expert advice to help you understand your baby’s sleep, a sleep tracker that automatically recommends bedtimes, expert guidance to help you navigate sleep challenge, step by step and meditations to help keep you centered in moments of frustration.
Don’t miss these must-watch sleep tips from the Smart Sleep Coach pediatric sleep consultant:
A Day in the Life of Your Baby
Your baby's budding curiosity and alertness make every day special, and you're probably feeling more at ease as a parent as you get comfortable sharing some simple routines with her. Here is an example of a daily schedule for a 4-month-old, which you could follow:
Your Baby's Health: Common Infections
If your baby is coughing or has other symptoms, such as fever, it's worth knowing about several health conditions and illnesses that might crop up at this stage, and when to reach out to the doctor:
A fever usually indicates illness. In infants, a rectal temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit and higher is considered a fever, and may mean your little one is currently fighting some kind of infection. A fever can indicate many different types of infection, from colds or flu to ear infections or even pneumonia, so it's best to call your doctor for advice and to watch for other symptoms of illness.
To take your baby's temperature accurately, use a digital thermometer and measure the temperature in her rectum. Gently insert the device no more than 1/2 inch to 1 inch, and wait until it beeps or lights up to give you an accurate reading.
Also known as an upper respiratory infection, a cold is caused by a virus. Colds are very common (most children will have 8 to 10 colds in their first two years) and highly contagious. Take precautions if your baby is in child care or if you have older, school-aged children at home. You're probably familiar with some of the most obvious signs of a cold, including a runny nose, sneezing, mild fever, cough, low appetite, and sore throat, but contact your pediatrician if your baby shows any of these symptoms:
bluish lips or fingertips
persistent cough (lasting longer than one week)
being extra sleepy or fussy
temperature over 102 degrees Fahrenheit.
Another common viral illness is bronchiolitis, which is an infection of the breathing tubes of the lungs. It's highly contagious, so be especially vigilant about hand-washing and other methods of hygiene during the fall and winter months, when infections are likely to spread. If you notice any of the following signs, contact your pediatrician right away if your baby:
wheezes when breathing
can't drink fluids
has bluish lips or fingertips
shows symptoms of dehydration.
Your Life as a Parent: Family Ties
A new baby brings lots of changes for a family. From aunts and uncles to cousins and grandparents, everyone wants to feel included and connected with the newest family member. This is an ideal time to get your loved ones involved in caring for the baby. Set aside special tasks they can do to help you with the baby, either at mealtime, bathtime, or playtime. As a new parent, you'll find it helpful to have your parents, in-laws, or other relatives pitch in with things like cleaning, shopping, and child care for your older kids. It will take some of the pressure off you and help everyone feel like part of the family.
One of the overwhelming parts of becoming a new parent is the torrent of advice you may get from well-meaning relatives or friends and even complete strangers! Learning to handle unwanted advice can be tricky. Keep in mind that in many cases, there is no one “right way” to raise a child. Pay attention to your child’s cues, and try to make decisions based on your child’s unique personality, your beliefs, and your specific circumstances. Above all, if you have any questions or concerns, turn to your baby’s pediatrician for expert advice, or ask trusted loved ones for their insights.
4 months of life. What should a child be able to do?
Baby 6 to 7 months old, what to do with him Baby 5 to 6 months, what to do with him Baby 4 to 5 months. What to do with him Baby 3 to 4 months old. What to do with him Baby 1 to 2 months old. What to do with him
Starting from 4 months, lying on the tummy, the baby raises high head resting on the forearms. At this time, he comprehends complex types of movement. For example, he tries to work the muscles of his back and legs. Feeling your own body for the baby plays a very important role! This feeling is very important to stimulate massage, games and gentle touches.
4 months for your baby "training". The back is still weak, the baby begins pull up to sit down in the future. He loves to be supported mice are picked up by the handles and tends to dance.
At this age, the child sleeps only 3 times a day, and is awake for two hours in a row.
The kid is actively cooing and recognizes his mother, rejoices, he easily has a "complex revitalization".
By the end of 4 months, the baby can laugh loudly and contagiously! That his surrounds - it becomes more and more interesting for him. By sound he can look for people, look forward and backward, over your shoulder. He answers his family joyful roar.
The kid is frightened if he hears the angry voice of a loved one. His face changes facial expressions, he might even cry!
At this age, the baby easily distinguishes the timbre and strength of sounds, under a beautiful classical music, he is awake and enjoys it, and tired, falls asleep under a gentle lullaby. If you like to dance with your baby, dance! Download carefully child to a slow melody and more quickly to a rhythmic one. So you develop a sense of rhythm in your crumbs through movement.
At this age, kids get great pleasure from playing with sounds. Completely independent of the mother's speech, children all over the world begin to pronounce first syllables: “ba”, “ma”, “am”, “ta”, etc. Some babies can change tonality and volume of his speech, and even hum whole melodies. All sounds for the crumbs are alive! He just enjoys them. Sense of speech, each vowel and consonant has certain properties for the child. Therefore, kids love to listen to poetry, even those that seem strange to you. At this time, the initial development of the eyeball is completed.
He examines objects, as if feeling them with his eyes, determining their shape and the size. Such a long and varied visual concentration, his attention to objects, active cooing - all this is evidence of a normal psychophysical development.
The development of vision allows the baby to examine and memorize objects in detail and of people. At this age, he begins to distinguish some colors, to catch the difference shapes such as oval, triangle and rectangle. He starts respond to a change in the appearance of a person whom he knows well. Mom put on a new dress, a hat or glasses - all this is interesting for him, he tries everything to consider and study, in a new image, he strives to recognize his own face.
At 4 months, the baby will already enjoy his reflection in the mirror. To do this, many toys have a safe mirror. He will greet your "stranger" with a joyful and radiant smile. At the fourth month, the baby is already trying to turn on its side. A little later he can roll over from stomach to back. All these movements are still uncertain, and more like rollovers.
Having come across toys, he examines them, seeks to grab and touch them. He still does not know how to grab objects on his own, but he keeps the nested rattle in the palm of your hand, firmly enough.
Any objects that fall into the hands of the baby, be sure to fall into the mouth. for further research. This is a new step in the development of the child! Baby strive explore the world with your sensitive mouth. This is how he gains experience. tactile sensations…
During feeding, the baby skillfully grabs and holds the breast with his hands mother or bottle.
The kid already knows how to perceive tactilely various materials and objects. give him the opportunity to accumulate experience of more and more new sensations. Offer your baby toys made of different materials, such as teethers. This is a time of unforgettable impressions and emotions, both for the baby and for the young. moms!
What a child should be able to do at 4 months - the development of a baby at 4 months boy
Every month of a baby's life is a whole stage of development. Therefore, what a child should be able to do at 4 months is different from the level that was observed a month earlier. At the same time, medical standards are exemplary. If he still does not know what is written in the charts, this does not mean a lag. Each child has his own program, which will be carried out as he grows and matures.
What a four-month-old baby can do.
Head holding and rotation. The baby holds his head well while crawling or lifting his arms. He turns his head to find the source of the sound, or just to look around.
Elbow raise with long upper body hold. This happens while lying on your stomach. The first attempts to crawl are made.
Identification of the source of sound, reaction to sound by turning the head. The child reacts to speech, music, etc.
Flip from back to side and belly, reverse to back. So it is more convenient for the child to get his favorite toy or move to the right place.
Capturing and holding rattles for a long time in the hand. Perhaps waving a rattle to extract sounds.
Attempts to sit up while holding hands. Girls cannot sit at four months, sometimes boys can do it. But the first attempts are made with pleasure. It is impossible to keep the child in this position for a long time - the spine is not ready for stress, and the muscles practically do not hold it.
Taste of things. Children at this age put toys and other objects into their mouths. This is not related to the growth of teeth, because it is too early for them. Trying objects helps the child to explore the world. It is important at this time to exclude the presence of small objects near the child: buttons, toy parts, pen caps, etc. A child may accidentally swallow them and suffocate.
Clapping hands. This action serves as a game and expression of emotions.
Holding on to a bottle or mother's breast. This is necessary for convenience during feeding.
Degree of social and emotional development
Every baby at 4 months already smiles and laughs in response to words or pleasant sounds, laughs while playing. He already understands well the meaning of a smile. He likes it when people around him smile, he understands that they have fun with him and that they approve of his behavior.
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Healthy four-month-old babies can walk. These are the first attempts to speak, which manifest themselves in the form of melodic throat sounds. The child listens to them himself.
At the age of four months there is already a reaction to pleasant sounds and music. Most children stop crying and rejoice. Some walk along singing. This is how joy and pleasure from pleasant sounds are manifested.
Babies love to be held upright by the armpits. So it is more convenient to look around, it is easier to explore the space. It is better if mom or dad does it. By maintaining contact with parents, a sense of security arises, and the first stay in a new position is tolerated with less shock.
At this age, the child begins to feel his own body in space. Often children spend a lot of time looking at their own hands and feet.
Reflex reactions at 4 months
The reflexes of a newborn child at this age are almost completely lost. Healthy children no longer have the Babkin reflex, proboscis, search, protective, grasping reflex. The simplest unconscious actions at this time give way to more complex reactions and behavioral complexes. This is due to the final maturation of the brain.
What reflexes remain
Partially the stepping reflex remains - the child can walk when he is held in an upright position, touching the sofa or table with his feet, and slightly tilted forward.
There may be some manifestation of the startle reflex (Moro). The child is still trying to grab something, frightened by a loud sound, a scream, a blow to the surface on which he lies, or the removal of the hand supporting him. However, if this skill and the stepping reflex are no longer there, this is also not considered a pathology.
In the first six months, the gag reflex is clearly visible - automatic ejection of objects from the mouth. For some children, this even makes the process of first feeding difficult. These reflexes, like the sucking reflex, remain in a person for life.
Skills development classes
To develop your baby's skills, no special knowledge is required. Enough daily communication and tactile contact. It is desirable to do massage and gymnastics. First, you need to bend and unbend the baby’s limbs several times, then gently turn it over from the back to the stomach and back several times. Then you can shake the baby on the fitball, attaching it to his stomach. You need to lean forward a little so that he tries to stretch his arms and back so that he tries to grab the ball.
Between gymnastics, be sure to take the child in your arms, wear it, stroking the back, arms and legs. Some pediatricians advise using a sling as often as possible, and taking a stroller only in extreme cases.
Massage is a must. It should be smooth touches, stroking along the limbs and back. No rubbing is needed yet.
Other measures also play an important role in the formation of skills.
New toys. In addition to rattles, teethers are needed, as the baby's gums may already swell. So he will learn to gnaw, which will subsequently make it easier to get used to adult food. It is good to fill a transparent plastic bottle with a mixture of different cereals and small things that will rustle and flicker pleasantly in it. Another technique for learning is filling fabric bags with cereals. Their feeling will teach the child new tactile sensations.
Conducting a dialogue. A child at 4 months is partially able to repeat the speech of an adult: individual sounds, intonations. After listening to his babble, say a few sentences in response, then pause again. So the baby will learn to understand that it is his turn to answer. You need to speak with the child calmly and affectionately, without distorting the words and not "lisping" so that he hears all the sounds. Be sure to address him by his first name. Amuse the child by playing "horned goat", "palmies", etc.
Hiding games. Hide behind a curtain or blanket, then show up again and say "coo-coo" or "hello." So the child will understand that even when the mother disappears from sight, she will definitely return. This teaches him to trust.
What a four-month-old baby should be able to eat
Mother's milk or an adapted formula is still the main type of baby's nutrition. Breastfeeding babies are not yet ready for complementary foods, however, the number of meals is already decreasing, and a food intake regimen is being developed. A child consumes 800-9 per day00 gr. breast milk. Water supplementation is required, especially in hot summer weather.
The digestive system of bottle-fed babies is ready for new products. They can be given vegetable purees: broccoli, cauliflower, pumpkin. The recommended dose on the first day is 1 teaspoon, on the second day - 2, etc. After 5-7 days, it is the turn of fruit complementary foods - bananas and apples according to the same scheme. Some mothers, on the advice of doctors, try to give juices, although this should be done with great care. The fact is that juice from sour fruits can cause acidification of the stomach and regurgitation. Sweet juice can discourage children from eating vegetable purees that are less tasty. Therefore, it is necessary to introduce juice into the diet with caution. For the first days it is better to dilute the juice with boiled water 1:1.
Some children already know how to eat with a spoon. In this case, you can feed the baby with light adapted cereals (buckwheat, rice) and curds. It is best to introduce these foods last.
Daily routine of a child at 4 months old
At this age, the routine is almost formed. Mom can correct it, but this should be done gently without stress for the child. Roughly, the schedule looks like this.
Waking up, washing, breakfast.
Wakefulness, games in the crib.
Feeding and staying awake at home.
Sleep, you can outside in a stroller.
Lunch, massage, developing gymnastics.
Walk and sleep in a stroller.
Feeding, listening to music, communicating with adults.
Calm communication and quiet games.
Bathing, dinner, getting ready for bed.
Deviations from the norm
Each child grows up individually, and a developmental delay of 1. 5-2 months is acceptable. Doctors and parents should pay special attention to the child in the following situations.
No physical activity, the child does not even roll over on his side and does not show interest in movement.
Baby can't hold his head.
No hum is observed.
No response to the name and voice of the mother, no search for the source of the sound.
The child does not smile, does it rarely or unconsciously, as if for no reason.
No interest in toys and bright objects in the apartment.
These deviations indicate a slow development of the child. In such a situation, you need to seek help from specialists. As a rule, the pediatrician himself pays attention to this during a routine examination. If not, contact him additionally and visit a neurologist.
Four-month-old babies often sweat, especially during the heat of summer, which can lead to skin irritation.