Narrator: Babies start learning from birth. They learn through the interactions and experiences they have with the people in their lives. The everyday things you do with your baby – like comforting, feeding, changing nappies, playing and talking – are all great opportunities to interact and get to know each other. These interactions help your baby learn the skills they need for life.
When you respond to your baby’s cues and comfort them when they cry, your baby learns that they’re loved, safe and secure. This is because cuddling or smiling at your baby releases natural chemicals in your baby’s body. These chemicals make your baby feel good, help them bond with you, and boost their overall physical development.
You can play with your baby anywhere and everywhere. Playing games like peekaboo stimulate your baby’s brain and help them develop important skills, like thinking, communicating, socialising and moving. Other great ways to play with your baby include singing, reading books, doing tummy time and making funny faces or sounds.
Your baby loves hearing your voice and watching your facial expressions as you talk to them. Talk, listen, and respond to your baby as often as you can. This helps your baby build language and learn about communication.
It's a good idea to make sure your baby has their routine health checks. This is a great way to pick up early signs of developmental concerns and get professional help.
Some of the communication signs to talk to a health professional about include if your baby does not make or respond to sounds or if your baby does not look you in the eyes.
Some of the physical signs to get checked out include if your baby does not use their arms and legs or if your baby is not holding their head up by around 3 to 4 months old.
It’s important to remember that you know your baby best. If you’re worried at all about your baby’s development or you notice that your baby has lost skills they had before, make an appointment to talk to your child and family health nurse or GP.