At five months old you are watching your baby develop quickly and time seems to be flying by. You are probably amazed that she is almost a half year old!
In month five, your baby will understand where noises are coming from. You will notice that she turns towards sounds to discover the cause. For this reason, toys that make noise are now becoming her favourites. Also, in the fifth month, when you say your baby’s name, she will react. She has heard her name so much now that she now recognises that it refers to her.
Listening to you and the people around her talk is still one of the best ways to entertain and engage your baby at this age. In fact, listening to you talk will continue to be one of her favourite things for many years – at least until she becomes a teenager!
Your baby is also beginning to express more emotions. She has been able to let you know when she is tired or upset by crying, but her cries will change and you will soon know the difference between a frustration cry and a hungry cry.
Another milestone that happens around this time is the ability to hold a bottle. For a while now, she has been reaching her hands up to hold the bottle or breast when feeing. Now, she may be able to start holding her own bottle. If not, remember that it is never safe to prop a bottle up to feed your baby. You must monitor feeding at all times in order to avoid choking. Another reason that a bottle propped up is not a good idea is that it causes tooth decay. When a baby falls asleep with the bottle in her mouth, the formula will sit on her teeth and turn to sugar on the teeth. Additionally, it has been shown that this can cause ear infections.
Mealtime might start changing in your baby’s fifth month, which could be her letting you know that she is getting ready to eat more solid food. If she pushes her tongue out when you put something on it or shows a great interest in the foods that others are eating, it can be a sign. You should not rush into feeding solids however. Talk to your paediatrician to get their take on when is the best time to start.
A big physical achievement usually occurs in the fifth month, which is your baby beginning to sit up on her own now. Her balance still needs work though, so if she is sitting you should still watch her closely. You can also use pillows around her to protect her if she tips over.
This is also a time when your baby may begin to start showing her fear of strangers. This is a normal emotional milestone that can sometimes leave you not knowing what to do. Experts suggest that you do not avoid people in order to not upset your baby. Instead, it is recommended that you expose her to people under calm circumstances – no loud parties or big crowds – and comfort her when she shows that she is afraid.