Well-adjusted babies who eat on the chart

8th month - How your baby is developing

Your gold treasure has learned a lot of new things in the past few months. Among other things, 8-month-old babies can now distinguish between familiar and unfamiliar faces. However, this leads to the first strangeness. Your baby needs a lot of security in such situations. Here you can find out what else you and your child can expect in their 8th month.

How your baby is developing

Motor skills

Babies want to get around at this age. Every child develops their own technique. Perhaps your 8 month old baby tries to crawl forward by rowing when lying on his stomach. It's probably not working that well yet. But your ambitious sportsman will stretch and stretch himself and try everything imaginable, for example to get hold of a distant toy.

If that succeeds, the baby toy may already hold it in the so-called scissor grip - between thumb and forefinger. Your baby will practice this grip extensively from the 8th month onwards. It explores the objects in its environment in a playful way and trains its fine and gross motor skills. So it's high time to make your home baby-proof.

Sitting also gradually works better. Many babies pull themselves up by their parents' hands to sit up when they are on their backs. For a short time, your baby may be able to sit up on its own. It probably still feels a little shaky.

Your little one may still need your help to sit safely. After the muscles have been trained and developed, however, they will no longer need any help. That could take a while, however.

The best training for developing motor skills is and remains playing. So stay active with your child. Be inspired by our baby games and baby activities.

Strangers

Strangling is often referred to as eight-month anxiety. If your baby has not been cheating by now, it may well be that he is starting now.

Fear of strangers often comes on suddenly. Many children then cling to their trusted parent and avoid eye contact with strangers or less familiar people. They seek protection in the arms of their mother or father.

Some 8-month-old babies react much more violently to strangers. They start screaming and go stiff with fear. It is very important that you give support to your fearful sweetheart in this situation. Talk to your child, pick them up, try to calm them down. This will help your baby understand that you are there and protect them.

Interestingly, the phenomenon of alienation occurs in a wide variety of cultures. But that's only a phase. From the 8th month of life, babies learn to distinguish strange faces from familiar ones. This can cause sudden anxiety to an unfamiliar person. But once your baby feels your care, it will certainly calm down quickly. Strangling is not a bad thing, but a completely normal development step.

How you can support your 8th month baby

Promote instead of overwhelming

All parents only want one thing: the best for their child. Opinions are divided on how this is to be achieved. What benefits one child has a negative effect on another. There is no general recipe for education.

But you can orientate yourself on a few basic elements and principles. A Zambian proverb says, “The grass doesn't grow faster if you pull on it.” In other words, don't push your child too hard to help him or her as it will not speed up the process. In the worst case scenario, your zeal will do even more harm than it will help your child.

Many parents project an enormous amount of expectations and desires into their children. Baby milk additives are supposed to promote intelligence, physiotherapy is supposed to make the crawling baby crawl, speech therapists support early speaking, special music CDs and baby toys further develop the senses. A child cannot live up to these expectations. On the contrary, most babies are simply overwhelmed by it.

For your baby to develop well, it doesn't take much more than attentive parents and a safe and loving home. These are the ideal conditions for your child's development and growth. Your baby can learn to crawl, stand and walk all by itself without taking any special measures. So if your baby isn't crawling by the age of 8 months, you don't need to do something right away. Your child develops according to their own internal schedule.

Perhaps your baby will go through a flare at 8 months and learn many skills in a short amount of time. In the next month it may hardly have any new experiences. Instead of measuring it against expectations and performance guidelines, you prefer to support your baby's very personal development process by creating a loving framework for it. Your bundle of joy will do the rest yourself.

Baby care

Many babies and children feel right at home in a large family with members of different ages. Sometimes the baby is taken in grandma’s arms, sometimes in that of the uncle or sister. Not only the child, but also the parents are often happy about this changing care. But for many families such a life model is hardly feasible. Often the grandparents and relatives live far away.

Perhaps you can nevertheless somehow arrange that after the age of 6 months your baby is no longer exclusively cared for by you and your partner around the clock. Babies and children also need other people in their environment than just their own parents in order to have new experiences. Because in addition to mom and dad, relatives, acquaintances and other children of all ages are important role models for your child. When your baby comes into contact with different people, this broadens their horizons of experience.

There are many different ways to make new contacts:

  • Playgroups or baby courses if you want to give your child contact with their peers.

  • You could team up with befriended parents to take turns looking after the children.

  • A babysitter can look after your child by the hour. This also gives you the opportunity to go out again as a couple.

  • As soon as you want or have to go back to work, you will of course need more regular childcare such as a day nursery, childminder or au pair help. Please note that depending on the region, free places in groups may be rare and early registration is required.

  • You can also set up a parents' initiative for childcare yourself - you will find support at the Bundesarbeitsgemeinschaft Elterninitiativen e.V ..

Feeding your baby in the 8th month

Babies enjoy playing. Often the parents are happy about it - but not so much when eating. But babies also love to play with meals. Because they want to explore everything they can get their hands on - including food. Playing and experimenting with food happens out of sheer curiosity. In this way babies gain new experiences and insights. And that is extremely important for the development of your little blob.

If your 8-month-old baby does not want to eat, but prefers to smear the porridge on the table, there may be other reasons as well. In addition to playing and eating, your child also deals with new requirements during meals.

It observes that you are probably quite anxious for it to finally eat. But maybe at this moment your baby has no desire or no appetite. And if your protégé refuses to eat or plays with it, i.e. does not meet your expectations, it notices what all of this can do for you. Your child demonstrates his will in this way.

In such situations, parents can despair. Of course, you feel responsible for the proper nutrition of your child. You have probably given a lot of thought to the food and the meal plan. Now if your baby regularly refuses to eat or has porridge fights with it, that is sure to worry you. Many parents then wonder what they are doing wrong.

The fact is, you can't force your baby to eat. And your baby cannot permanently refuse to eat. At some point, your 8 month old baby will get hungry and will need to have a meal. So nobody can win the fight for food. Neither you nor your baby. So if such a situation should arise, don't get involved in this power game. Take the potential for conflict out of the situation and try to stay calm. This is the quickest way for everyone to relax.

Perhaps there are other very obvious reasons why your little smack might not want to eat. For example, if your baby gets nibble on and off from time to time, he or she may no longer be hungry at mealtimes. Or your baby drinks a lot of breast milk in between, even at night - from the 6th month your baby should actually be able to do without a night meal.

If you do all of this and your child still shouldn't want to eat, these three tips on how to feed your baby properly may help.

Your 8 month old baby's daily routine

Baby's health

Whether on a summer vacation on the beach, in winter in the mountains or at home in the garden: Don't forget to protect your baby from too much sun.

Babies and toddlers have a much thinner horny layer than adults. This is why your baby's skin is particularly sensitive to light. UV radiation can more easily penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin. It will still take a while for your baby to develop the skin's own protective mechanisms: these are only fully developed from the age of twelve.

So cover your baby with sunscreen in spring and summer before you go outside. But that alone is not enough. Even with sunscreen, your child's skin is not adequately protected from UV radiation. You should therefore avoid the midday sun entirely. It is best to never go into direct, blazing sun with your baby for long periods of time. Babies aged 8 months are better off in the shade or under the parasol.

But you should also apply sunscreen to your baby in the shade. Although the UV rays are not as intense there, they can still cause damage to babies and cause sunburns in babies.

And if your little water rat splashes around in the cool water, be aware that even so-called waterproof sunscreen is not really waterproof. After playing in the water, reapply the cream. A sunscreen with a sun protection factor of 50 is recommended.

Here you will also find a few useful tips for traveling on vacation with your baby.

How your baby sleeps in the 8th month

One speaks of sleep problems when your baby sleeps poorly over the long term, wakes up again and again at night and cannot fall asleep again on its own, or does not even come to rest in the evening. This can quickly become a huge burden for the whole family.

Trouble sleeping

A baby does not sleep through the night in the first few months of life. This is completely normal. Babies first have to learn to adapt their sleep-wake rhythm to the day-night cycle. Your 8-month-old baby should usually have done this by now. If your restless bunny is not getting a rhythm, is difficult to calm down, cannot fall asleep, or wakes up often at night and screams and cries, he or she is likely having trouble sleeping.

There are many different causes behind such sleep problems in babies and toddlers. Sometimes the poor sleep can have a physical origin, such as frequent childhood illnesses or a certain immaturity in premature babies. But maybe it is also due to emotional stress. Environmental factors such as noise, light and smoke can also play a role.

Often times, sleep problems do not arise on their own, but together with other difficulties - such as colic or feeding complications. In technical jargon one speaks of so-called regulation disorders. That is, when babies and infants find it extremely difficult to regulate their behavior in an age-appropriate manner. For example, the child cannot calm down from an agitated state even with the help of the parents. Sleep problems should therefore always be viewed and treated in conjunction with other difficulties that may arise.

If you have persistent sleep problems, you should definitely see a pediatrician to make sure that there are no acute or chronic diseases. But even if you notice that you can no longer bear the strain, the pediatrician can be your first point of contact and refer you to advice centers and therapy facilities.

With professional support and some changes in everyday life, you can usually get your sleep problems under control quickly. So don't be afraid to seek outside help.

How your life is changing

Humans are social beings. Just as your baby needs contact with other people, it is just as important for you to lead a social life. Getting in touch with other people outside the family and participating in life is an important basic need. Therefore, make sure that you do not unconsciously isolate yourself from the outside world and only stay within the family.

Maybe you want to get in touch with friends again. If they are also parents of babies or toddlers, it will probably be a little easier to organize this. A regular get-together for breakfast could be an option, where you can talk to your friends about family topics, but also simply about God and the world.

You can just as easily try to make new contacts. For example, in crawling groups, baby swimming or in PEKiP courses, you will meet many other mothers or fathers with whom you can start a conversation. Or of course on the playground. And who knows, maybe one or the other acquaintance will turn into a long-term friendship. Exchanging experiences with like-minded people will certainly enrich your life.

Your baby's life is changing rapidly. Every day it learns something new and sees its environment with different eyes. Your life has probably been turned upside down too. Watching your baby develop and exploring with him is a great gift!

Checklist: your 8 month old baby

  • Your baby is probably starting to struggle. See this as a normal development step and give your baby a lot of security in these situations.

  • Your baby's urge to move increases more and more. Make your home baby safe.

  • Family rituals and a certain regularity in everyday life help your baby to find their way in his world.