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Health Information For Parents
Walking is the major achievement of kids this age and over the coming year they’ll get much better at it.
As kids’ mobility improves, so does their ability to investigate where they couldn’t before. Once again, take a look around your home from a kid’s vantage point and update childproofing measures to keep up with your child’s advancing skills.
Though some babies take their first steps around their first birthdays, most learn to walk well in the months after they turn 1.
Kids who are learning to walk are called “toddlers” because that’s exactly what they do — they toddle, keeping their legs wide apart and seeming to hesitate between each step, jerking from side to side as they move one foot forward, then the next.
About 6 months after taking their first steps, toddlers develop a more mature gait, holding their hands at their sides (rather than out in front for balance) and moving with their feet closer together. They also tend to move their feet in a way that looks more like walking — moving from the heel to the toe.
During these months of practice, most toddlers take a few spills, but this is part of learning to walk. You can’t protect your youngster from every fall, but you can reduce the risk of injury by keeping exploration in safe areas away from sharp corners of furniture and other hazards.
After walking for a couple of months, your child will begin to feel more confident about walking and take on new challenges — such as picking up and carrying objects, moving while pulling a toy behind, and climbing stairs.
By the middle to end of the second year, your child may learn to run, start to kick a ball, and try to throw a ball. By 2 years, your child may jump in place.
Give your child lots of things to do and see. Take walks around your yard and the neighborhood, or visit a local playground. At home, you can make an obstacle course of pillows or boxes and encourage your child to walk, climb, and crawl through it. Buy a few balls for kicking and throwing.
Experts recommend that toddlers should:
As their physical skills develop, toddlers also learn to use their hands more. Toys and craft supplies that can encourage this include:
Normal child development tends to follow a certain pattern. The skills that babies develop early serve as building blocks for future skills. Still, the time it takes to develop these skills can vary widely among kids.
Let your doctor know if your child does not:
Not reaching individual milestones doesn’t necessarily mean there is a problem. Talk to your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your child’s development.
Toddlers have little tummies, so serve foods that are packed with the nutrients they need to grow healthy and strong, and limit the sweets and empty calories.
The toddler months might continue to bring colds, bruises, and other minor emergencies, but you’ll also find yourself dealing with your toddler’s emerging independence.
Choosing baby products can be confusing, but one consideration must never be compromised: your little one’s safety.
Nighttime feedings may be a thing of the past, but in this second year of life your tot might be rising for other reasons. Learn more.
Kids go from babies to toddlers during this time, from first steps to walking well. They also make major strides in language and communication.
You’re in for a year of changes! Midway through this year, most babies are walking and starting to lose that “baby” look.
Flatfeet, toe walking, pigeon toes, bowlegs, and knock-knees. Lots of kids have these common orthopedic conditions, but are they medical problems that can and should be corrected?
Your toddler is probably saying a few first words now, but you may not be able to understand them all. Learn about how your child is communicating.
You might think of babies and toddlers when you hear the words “babyproofing” or “childproofing,” but unintentional injury is the leading cause of death in kids 14 and under.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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