Parents often ask...
“What’s the biggest secret of worry-free baby development?”
“What’s the quickest way to know my baby’s development is OK. And at what stage should I take further action if I suspect my baby’s falling behind?”
Experience all over the world confirms that most baby development problems can easily be corrected if treated immediately.
So, the #1 secret is...
Spotting a potential problem as soon as possible. And then immediately taking action to correct it.
The difficult part is often to know what to look for.
First realize that normal baby development is universal and follows the same natural pattern throughout the world. That means a baby developing “normally” should master every milestone within normal ranges regardless of surroundings or where s/he lives.
Secondly... babies may sometimes be slow developers. But there’s one more thing: there is a big difference between being late reaching a milestone and not doing it at all.
Here we’re looking at being slow to reach a milestone.
The best practical “rule of thumb” is...
When there’s one development milestone that your child doesn’t master on time it’s not necessarily a problem.
The answer lies in looking at *all* aspects of your baby’s development to get a better answer.
Let me explain: look at what your baby does, AND also at how she does it.
If your baby is very late in reaching one milestone, it isn’t necessarily reason for concern. Your baby may only be a slower developer.
But if at the same time she also experiences other development problems, then you need to be alert.
You shouldclosely watch the rest of your child’s development.
These may be things such as...
Poor sleeping patterns; Poor eating patterns; Almost always crying; Being constantly irritated; Difficult to soothe; Your baby makes few or no noises, or... Doesn’t show any interest in toys.
Now if you see one or more of these signs at the same time when s/he’s struggling to master a specific milestone, you have several things happening at the same time.
And combined these signs may be telling you that your child may not only be a slow developer. In fact, your baby may have a development problem or two that needs further attention.
Stated differently... you should not look at only one milestone in isolation. Take the rest of your baby’s day-to-day behaviors and actions also into consideration.
Try to find out and judge your baby’s overall functioning. Are things working in unison? Or do you see obvious signs that everything is not necessarily in order?
If you suspect that your child may be having some development problems, take action immediately. Don’t postpone follow-up action. And don’t try to solve the problem yourself.
Consult a specialist as soon as possible.
Monitoring and judging your baby’s overall performance is surely the very best indication and confirmation that your baby is developing normally. And best of all... it’s also the shortest route to recovery.