The arrival of your precious little one has already put everyone in your home in a happier spot. From the first social smile to the first baby…it is all very exciting and beautiful. And now, everyone is waiting with bated breath for his first step. When is the bundle of joy, which is well into toddlerhood going to hold your finger and walk?
Is your little one ready to walk?
The baby’s first steps are one of the most anticipated developmental milestones for parents and grandparents alike. Along with the excitement, there occasionally is a tad bit of worry if your toddler is making no progress. But there is no need to get antsy. Every child will take his own time, and walk when he’s absolutely ready. In fact, once he walks, you will be running behind him 24X7, so don’t be in a rush.
Is there a right time?
Though most toddlers start walking unaided between 11-13 months, this can vary from child to child. The broader range of normal is 10-18 months. Chubbier tots take longer to walk; the heavier they are the longer it takes for them to find balance. Temperament and curiosity levels also play an important role in deciding the age at which your baby takes his first step. Some babies are just happy to sit and watch the world from their cribs and high chairs, while others can’t wait to get out there themselves. Also, since crawling is so much more ‘safe’ and ‘comfortable’ than walking, that some lazy and content toddlers tend to avoid getting up on ‘twos’ as opposed to their ‘fours’.
Does your little one need a push?
If your tiny tot has been pulling himself up to a standing position and cruises around with the help of furniture, he’s probably ready. Another sign which tells us that they are ready is when they get ambitious and let go off support while standing. You can help by keeping their favorite toys a few steps away and encouraging them to reach out to them. Pull-along toys are a great help too. The American Academy of Paediatrics discourages walkers as they can cause accidents and also put the toddlers in a different comfort zone, and it’s difficult to shake them out of it later.
When to seek a professional’s advice?
Just because other babies are running around at 1 doesn’t mean yours should follow suit. However, at the age of 16 months, if your toddler is not even showing some interest in walking you should consult a pediatrician. Just one delayed milestone is no cause for concern, but if you feel like your toddler is lagging behind in more than 3 milestones you should consult your physician.
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