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Development Milestones: Age 6 Weeks

Learn what to expect from your baby at 6 weeks. See the physical, intellectual and emotional milestones your little one may be reaching and learn how to encourage your baby's development.

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Let's meet Ryan and his mother. He is being given a check-up at the clinic. At 6 weeks, babies don't have much control over their head movements, but we can see that Ryan is able to lift his head for short periods of time. Ryan is making good eye contact with the nurse and we can see that his eyes are able to follow a toy. When Ryan is lying on his back, he lies with his head to one side. 6-week old infants will only be able to keep their head in the central position for short periods of time. The nurse is showing that Ryan's newborn reflexes are still intact. They will disappear after 4 to 6 months and will gradually be replaced by conscious movements. A 6-week old baby should spend short periods of time lying on the stomach several times a day. This will strengthen the muscles on a baby's stomach, neck, back, shoulder, and seat. Having strong muscles will be important when a child is learning to crawl and to walk. You can help your baby lie on his stomach by putting your hand under his head for support, as you see demonstrated by Ryan and the nurse. You should talk a lot to your baby while he's lying like this otherwise he will soon start to complain. It's hard work for a 6-week old baby to lie on his stomach so keep the session short and try the exercises only when he's in the right mood.