Infant care in the ninth month
The baby’s development
It might seem that your child is developing slower now than he used to u to this point, but notice how he keeps practicing all the skills he has mastered day by day. It upsets him greatly if something does not turn out right, so he might be playing calmly in one moment only to throw a tantrum in the next. Now he is able to overcome minor obstacles, for example he will try everything in his power to reach a desired toy. He is getting more and more independent: he might be able to feed himself with his hands, help you when you dress him or turn the page of the story book when you read fro him.
Now that his teeth are out, he can eat more types of solid food and is trying to learn to use a spoon. You should also encourage him to feed himself with his hands first. He picks up on your habitual gestures of showing affection (for example caressing) and imitates them.
His crawling movements are evolving and more and more often turn into standing on all fours or climbing. By the end of this month the little one is capable of sitting in an upright position on his own for a few minutes, and supports himself with one hand if he reaches for something with the other from this position. He likes to play with his toes when he is sitting, which mostly makes him take off his socks. As a courtesy of his strengthened back muscles, if you make him stand up, he puts his weight on his soles and tries lifting his feet, although this usually results in falling down on his bottom. He is also getting more skilful in using his hands: now he can pick up small morsels with his fingers, knocks objects together with his hands and generally enjoys making noise with anything. His love for dropping things evolves into throwing them away consciously.
A 9-month-old recognizes spatial relations quite accurately and understands the concepts of “under”, “over”, etc. He can spot and follow movements even 3 meters away from him, and is able to focus on two things simultaneously for minutes. Also, when he abandons an activity in the middle, he is capable of going back and continuing it from where he left off. He listens to you when you call him and responds by making a sound, repeats the melodies he hears and produces longer sounds. He understands and knows at least 20 names of people and objects. When you read him a bedtime story, he can make a mental connection between known objects and pictures. He can clap, give you a toy if you ask for it, offers his hand, show his feelings through the rhythm of the sounds he makes and his facial expressions are getting more expressive. In the company of other children, they rather play besides each other than with each other.
The child’s mood swings are not restricted to daytime hours: since he can climb out of the crib, he might tend to climb into your bed.
The baby’s health
Now it is time to take him to the next scheduled appointment with the pediatrician since he was 6 months old. Besides a throughout physical examination, the specialist also measures the child’s height and weight. He also administers a recommended vaccination if you want him to. If you have any questions concerning the development of the baby’s movement or anything else, do not hesitate to ask your pediatrician.