Physical development refers to a child's control over her muscles her coordination her ability to sit, stand and eventually to walk and run. It also refers to her manipulative abilities.
Developmental milestones are important developments in babies that take place when babies are within a particular range of age. These developments are very prominent. For example, when babies learn to hold their head, roll from their back to tummy, learn to sit, stand or walk or when babies start teething. Discussed below are some facts about developmental milestones
What is physical development (gross motor and fine motor skills)?
Physical development refers to a child's control over her muscles, her coordination, her ability to sit, stand, and eventually to walk and run. It also refers to her manipulative abilities. As she masters new skills, she will reject primitive ones.
What are gross motor skills and fine motor skills?
Physical development can be broken up in to three month intervals and divided into two categories: gross motor skills
and fine motor skills
. Gross motor skills refer to the child's ability to control different parts of her body. Fine motor skills refer to her level of coordination of the different body parts (such as picking up a raisin with her thumb and forefinger).
What are developmental milestones?
Milestones are punctuations in a baby's growth and development. Milestones of physical development proceed from head to toe. Hence, the child first learns to control her head, then her body, arms and legs. These milestones provide a guide to parents telling them what to expect and when to expect it. Remember that departures from the norm should not be a reason for undue panic unless confirmed by expert medical opinion.
How closely should my child follow these developmental milestones?
From what you have read in books and observed through others' experiences, you realize that a child's development should follow an approximate schedule. A note of caution. Every baby is unique and will probably not fit in to any theoretical parameters.
How can I encourage my baby to attain developmental milestones?
Different kinds of stimulations can be provided to babies while attaining various milestones at different ages. When a baby is between four to five months old she will probably learn to hold her head. During this phase she will try to push herself up with the support of her elbows and arms. It is the time when she is trying to develop control over the posture of her body which serves as basis for attaining other developmental milestones. To boost these skills it is necessary to give her tummy time for short durations.
Toys play a very important role in helping babies to attain developmental milestone. Toys
like rattles, graspers, play-gyms etc; help in boosting baby’s fine motor skills. Teethers help in providing relief to the babies who are experiencing irritation in gums due to teething. Push and pull toys encourage babies to walk. However, it is not advisable to give walkers to the babies as it may hamper the development of their walking skills. It is also very crucial to ensure that the toys that are purchased for babies meet all the safety standards.
Providing right and safe environment for babies to develop in a healthy manner is also very important. When your baby starts experimenting with her gross and fine motor skills, it is necessary to ensure that the home is baby proofed. All the doors of cupboards and drawers are locked properly so that when the baby is trying to hold on the furniture while learning to walk or stand-up she does not get hurt. Provide right kind of support and let your baby grow in your warmth.