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Your Baby is Six Months Old

Your little one will be growing in leaps and bounds this month and its personality will be developing rapidly, bringing you and your spouse golden moments of amusement and happiness. Always remember that your baby is an individual, and as such it will be growing at its own pace, so don't worry if it hasn't reached some of the developmental milestones mentioned here yet. 

Mental Development
Basking in attention will become something your child enjoys and demands, but one downside to this newfound love is that your baby will probably try to get your attention through both positive and negative behavior, so you're going to have to begin teaching it right from wrong. Your little one's communication methods will be expanding and soon it will develop its unique expressions and sounds to let you know what it thinks, wants and needs. 

One thing your little one will enjoy doing this month is turn-taking games where making sounds and language is involved. Mimic your baby's vocalizations and make animal noises such as "quack-quack" or "woof-woof" when it's your turn. It will both amuse and teach your baby new things about the world around it.

Physical Development
Stronger neck and arm muscles mean lots of rolling over for your little one. You're going to have to keep an eye on your baby when changing its Fine Baby® diaper on an elevated top, because you never know when the mood will strike it to roll over! Some babies resort to rolling to where they want to go before they learn how to crawl, whereas others skip the rolling altogether. As long as your baby is developing and gaining new skills, you needn't worry about whether it can roll over or not. 

The more active your baby becomes the more it will appreciate loose and stretchy clothes that don’t chaff, itch, or get caught in furniture. Avoid dressing your baby in clothes that have buttons, long ties, bows, or anything else that can discomfort your baby while it's sleeping, crawling or playing. 

Your child's hand preference will become evident this month, so you'll be able to tell whether it's right-handed or left-handed. Don't try to influence your baby's hand preference, as it is something that's determined before birth. Trying to get it to use its right hand if it’s left-handed will only cause your baby to become confused and might lead to eye-hand coordination problems down the road. 
Your baby can now support some of its weight on its legs and will love to bounce when you hold it up. Hold your bouncy little one under its arms and help it stand up on the floor or on your lap to give it the opportunity to strengthen its leg muscles.

Eating Habits
Usually considered the perfect weaning time by experts, this month will be suitable for most babies to start eating solids, which can make things a bit hectic for new moms. Upon introducing solids, it's not unusual for your baby's stool to change its color and odor. If its stool seems too firm, switch to other fruits and vegetables such as oatmeal or barley cereal, and cut back on ingredients such as rice cereal, bananas and apple sauce as they tend to be constipating. 

If your baby attempts grabbing the spoon while you're feeding it or snatches food off your plate, you can begin offering it finger foods. Place a few pieces of food on your baby's highchair tray or on an unbreakable plate and let it get busy. Keep a close eye on your little one as it eats to make sure it doesn't choke. You might want to begin by offering it foods that it can gum or that dissolve in its mouth until it grows some teeth. Good choices of finger foods include chunks of banana, seedless watermelon, cantaloupe, well-cooked pasta spirals, very small pieces of cheese, and small pieces of soft cooked vegetables.

Sleeping Habits
Your baby this month should ideally get around 2 1/2 hours of sleep between 7am and 7pm, which can be divided into two naps, and 11 hours of sleep at night. Of course, different babies have different sleep requirements, so don't worry if your child puts less hours of sleep at night.

Establishing a bedtime schedule at this point would be advisable to help keep sleep times smooth and uneventful affairs. It is also recommended that you place your child to sleep while it is still awake to get it used to settling itself to sleep in its own bed. Give your baby its favorite toy or blanket to help it settle down.