Pediatric Associates of Austin, P.A.
MY SIX MONTH VISIT
What I can do now
- Smile, laugh, and squeal.
- Hold my head steady when I am held and when I am sitting.
- Open my hands, grasp at clothes and rattles, and transfer objects from hand to hand.
- When lying on my stomach, I can hold up my head and raise my body on my hands.
- I will reach for or hit at objects.
- I will watch a mobile or interesting object around me.
- I know my parents’ voices and touch. I may be afraid of strangers.
- I smile back when you smile and play with me.
- I may turn and look at you if you call my name.
Help me learn what to eat
- Continue to give me breast milk or formula for my first year.
- I can also start eating solid foods now! An iron-fortified single grain cereal such as rice is best to start. Please add only one new baby food a week to be sure that I do not have any allergies.
- After cereals, add fruits and vegetables, then meat. Always stay with me when I eat.
- Avoid giving me honey, nut butter, strawberries, chocolate, or eggs until I am at least a year old.
- Hold me and cuddle me while I drink my bottle. I like the interaction. Propping my bottle can cause me to have tooth decay, sleep problems, and more ear infections.
Play with me
- Hold me, cuddle me, rock me, talk to me, and sing to me. I love it!
- Play pat-a-cake, peek-a-boo, and so-big with me. I like playing these games now.
- Encourage me to talk by talking to me during dressing, bathing, feeding, playing, walking, and while driving.
- Read to me. I like to hear you read. I like music. Play music for me.
- I like to smile back at you when you smile at me.
- Encourage me to play with toys for babies my age that you make or buy. I like bright colored objects or toys.
- Talk to my doctor about my babysitters and other caretakers.
Protect my teeth
- I may be getting my first teeth now. This may cause me to drool a lot, to have swollen gums, looser stools, and fussiness.
- You may want to use a cloth or soft infant toothbrush to clean my new teeth and gums.
- Please do not prop a bottle in my mouth or put me to bed with a bottle since this will slowly ruin my teeth.
- I like to chew on teething rings. They may make my gums feel better.
Concerns for Mom and Dad
- I may not sleep for as many hours at night as I used to. Help me learn to go to sleep by myself by putting me to bed awake and having a bedtime routine.
- A small stuffed animal, favorite toy, or pacifier may calm me at bedtime soon.
Keep me safe
- Always keep me buckled in my approved, rear-facing infant car seat. The middle rear seat is the safest place for me.
- Never tie strings or pacifiers around my neck. These could choke me.
- Never shake me.
- Keep putting me to bed on my back.
- Be sure there are smoke detectors with good batteries where I live and sleep.
- Please do not let anyone smoke or drink hot liquids while holding me. I may grab them and injure myself.
- Please do not leave me alone on a bed or sofa or with young children or pets. I might get hurt!
- Please use safety locks on cabinets and covers for electrical sockets, and lock up all medicines, paints, cleaning agents, health and beauty aids, and other poisons.
- I can pick up small things now, so please keep toys with small parts or other small or sharp objects out of my reach. Do not give me balloons, plastic bags, or other things that might get sucked into my throat and choke me.
- Please continue to keep anyone from smoking in my home or car. Smoke is bad for babies (and adults)!
- Do not leave me alone in a tub of water. Take me with you if the phone or doorbell rings.
- Walkers are dangerous and keep me from exploring with my hands. They will not help me learn to walk. Please do not put me in them.
- Sunscreen may be used on small areas of the body if adequate clothing and shade are not available. When choosing sunscreen look for one that screens both UVB and UVA rays. The skin protection factor (SPF) should be at least 15. Check a small area for an allergic reaction before continuing.
- On average babies have 8 to 10 illnesses during their first year. I will probably have some illnesses in the next few months.
- I may show that I am ill by having a fever, nasal congestion, cough, diarrhea, vomiting, or a skin rash. I may not want to eat, or may act irritable or sluggish.
- You can help by having a digital thermometer (no mercury please) and by knowing how to take both an axillary and rectal temperature. The clinic nurse will help you decide when to have me seen by my doctor. It will be helpful to have acetaminophen infant drops to reduce fever and an electrolyte solution at home. Writing down what is wrong with me, my temperature, and any questions you have before calling the clinic will help to get all your questions answered.
- Always keep the name of my doctor available for those who take care of me. The emergency number 9-1-1 and the poison control number (1-800-POISON-1) should be kept by the phone.
- Ask my doctor or nurse about books that might be useful if you do not have one. You may also want to ask about parenting classes if you are interested in more information.
- My brothers and sisters may be jealous of me. Have them do simple things to help with my care. They should also spend some special time with mom and dad to read, cuddle, or play. Help them to talk about their feelings about me.
- Be sure to take some time for yourselves and one another.
Before my nine month visit, I will
- Be able to pull to stand and cruise holding onto furniture.
- May start to use a cup.
- Make long strings of sounds like "ma-ma-ma" and "da-da-da" and may also wave "bye-bye."