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Baby Development: Your 1-Year-Old

Your baby’s first big birthday has arrived! As you get ready for the celebration, think back on the last 12 months as a time of incredible growth and development. In just one year, your baby has transformed from a completely helpless newborn into an independent little person.

In this portion of WebMD’s month-by-month guide, you’ll discover what baby milestones you can expect your child to achieve now that she’s 1 year old.

Baby Month by Month

Girl and Boy Baby
Your baby's first year will be full of joys and challenges. WebMD pediatrician Steven Parker, MD, explains what you can expect as your baby grows and develops.

One Year Baby Milestones: Growth

Your baby’s weight has likely tripled since birth. At month 12, babies also have grown by 50% -- about 9 to 11 inches -- and their brain is about 60% of its adult size. After an incredible one-year growth spurt, your baby’s weight gain will start to slow down as her activity level increases.

One Year Baby Milestones: Motor Skills

Your 1-year-old should be standing alone, and may even have taken those first tentative solo steps. If she hasn’t, hopefully you’ll have your video camera ready to capture the moment when she does.

One-year-olds are pretty good at doing a few things for themselves, such as eating with their fingers, helping their parents dress them, and turning the pages of a storybook. Your baby should be starting to use a few everyday items correctly, including a spoon, telephone, and hairbrush. Although her aim with these things might not be perfect, she certainly has the right intention. 

One Year Baby Milestones: Sleep

By one year, your baby should be sleeping less during the day and more at night. Most children at this age still need an afternoon nap, but their morning nap may be a thing of the past.

One Year Baby Milestones: Eating

At one year, you can make the transition from breast milk or formula to cow’s milk. Start with whole milk. Your baby needs the extra fat for healthy brain growth and development. Don’t transition to low-fat milk -- or any other low-fat foods, for that matter -- until after your baby’s second birthday.

If you’ve been breastfeeding, you might decide that one year is the time to start weaning your baby. It tends to be easier on both mother and baby to wean gradually, dropping one feeding at a time. The bedtime feeding is usually the last one to go. To replace nursing, you can give your 1-year-old a cup of milk, a snack, or something to suck on.

Now that your baby is eating more table foods, be very careful about choking hazards. Avoid giving your 1-year-old whole grapes, pieces of hot dogs, popcorn, or any other foods that could get stuck in her throat. Always stay close by your baby during mealtimes. You can now give foods that contain honey.

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