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All children roll over, talk, interact, and reach other developmental milestones at slightly different times. Maybe your first-born child began to walk at 9 months, while your second did not take a step until after his or her first birthday. But when children greatly lag in one or more areas of development, this may be more than a typical variation.
It may be time to seek professional advice because there might be a delay related to their physical, emotional, or cognitive development.
The brain develops very rapidly even before your baby is born and that rapid development continues throughout his/her earliest years of life.
These early years of brain development are the foundation for emotional and physical health, social skills, and cognitive capacities that are important for success in school, the workplace, and in the community.
Many families report that they knew something was wrong and had to advocate to get support. Many also say that they wish they had spoken up earlier. Your everyday observations as a parent or family member provide essential information to doctors and other health care providers. Watch our video to learn more >>>
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Milestones have been identified at different stages in babies and young children, divided by type of development:
Many specific actions fit within these categories, from rolling over to hopping on one foot, from gurgling to counting aloud. The CDC has identified developmental milestones divided by age–2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 9 months, 1 year, 18 months, and then 2, 3, 4, and 5 years old.
The CDC also has easy-to-follow checklists and other resources describing these milestones by category and age. Pictures and videos show examples of children at various ages and suggest when to be concerned and seek out professionals.
Getting help right away is important. The first 5 years of life are the best time to influence brain development and create a strong foundation for the future. Intervening early affects all areas of a child’s brain and, therefore, an entire lifetime of learning.