When Should Babies Start to…

Whether you’re a new parent or raising your third or fourth child, every little milestone in your baby’s life can be exciting… especially that first “sleep through the night” milestone! While infants reach these big milestones on their own time, this post may help set some expectations for when you might experience some breakthroughs…


Surprise… your baby was most likely smiling before you even met her! Of course, in utero smiles probably aren’t what you’re asking about. Baby’s first “real” smile may show anywhere from six to twelve weeks. You may be able to tell that it’s not just a reflex by looking for emotion in the eyes. And laughing? Expect those full-blown belly laughs somewhere around five months.

Eye Contact

Eye contact may occur as early as six to eight weeks of age. However, some babies may not make definitive eye contact until three months of age.

Roll Over

Rolling over may happen as early as three months, but it’s more common to take place somewhere around the four to six-month mark. Of course, infants have a way of rolling over for the first time when you’re not totally prepared! That being the case, never leave your baby unattended on a changing table or other elevated surface where he could roll over and fall.

Sleep Through the Night

Mark this milestone as the most exciting one that you won’t even notice until it’s over! Many babies will sleep six to eight hours uninterrupted after about four months of age. (But just because they do it once doesn’t mean it’s the new status quo!) By about six months of age, baby may even make it to ten blissful uninterrupted hours of sleep!


Around six months of age, babbling may turn into actual words. (Though meaning may not be associated with those words until around 12 months.) At approximately 18-24 months, very short, simple sentences may appear.


If you haven’t done so already, it’s officially time to baby-proof the home at about six months of age. Crawling often occurs between seven and 10 months. Lots of tummy time and play may encourage crawling in your baby!


Once your baby begins to pull himself up, walking is just around the corner. Babies often begin to pull themselves up to a standing position around nine to 10 months, and are walking around 12-15 months.

See a Pediatrician in Nashville at St. Thomas Medical Group

Again, it’s worth repeating that these milestones are general in nature. If your baby hasn’t reached a milestone during the age range described here, don’t panic. Talk to your child’s pediatrician if you have any concerns!

Looking for a pediatrician who can partner with you in caring for your child? St. Thomas Medical Group Department of Children and Adults is conveniently located at the intersection of Green Hills, Sylvan Park and Belle Meade. Meet our providers. Call +1 (615) 301-7040 or schedule an appointment online.