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9 Months Checkup

Height: ____  Weight ____  Head Circ: ____

FEEDING: We recommend that your baby stay on an iron-fortified formula until one year of age. You may begin meats now if you haven’t done so already. Begin with 1 teaspoon and gradually increase to 1-2 tablespoons per serving. You may offer ½ to 1 jar per day. We also encourage finger foods at this time. This helps develop your child’s pincer grasp.

Some suggested finger foods:

    Cheerios (or Kix) Graham crackers
    Scrambled Eggs Soft cheeses


Formula need will continue to decrease as the amount of solid food increases. Continue to encourage use of a sippie or straw cup, and consider offering formula in a cup during the day to get your child used to drinking “milk” from a cup. This makes the transition away from the bottle easier in the long run.

Do not put your child to bed with a bottle. This has been found to increase the incidence of ear infections and cause dental cavities and decay.

ELIMINATION: Stools may vary greatly as you introduce new foods. They still should be soft and easy to pass. Again, your child may have from 2-4 stools/day to one every 3-4 days.

SLEEP: Sleep requirements vary. Put baby to bed at a regular time each night. Most are sleeping 8-12 hours per night. Your baby should sleep in his own bed, preferably out of the parent’s room. Put baby to sleep when awake or slightly drowsy so he will learn to fall asleep on his own. This also helps teach him that he does not need you in order to get back to sleep if he awakens during the night. This will avert many problems in the long run.

Many babies begin to awaken 1-2 times during the night at this time. This seems to be related to separation anxiety often occurring at this age. If you are certain the child is not hungry or ill, and is safe, warm and dry, we do encourage letting him cry it out and comfort himself back to sleep. This is easier said than done, especially at 2 am! But, consistency does pay off! Holding, rocking, giving him a bottle (when he isn’t hungry) and putting him into bed with you reinforces his waking up and prolongs the experience!


  • Plays peek-a-boo and pat-a-cake
  • Give large push-pull toys to encourage walking
  • Likes books with large pictures
  • Likes simple take apart toys, like nested cups or boxes
  • Likes balls and various colored blocks


  • May creep/crawl (sometimes backwards at first)
  • Gets self from lying to sitting position on her own
  • Pulls up to standing position, may even “cruise” holding onto furniture
  • Sits steadily without support for long periods of time
  • Bangs two objects together
  • Developing pincer grasp
  • Responds to simple verbal commands


  • Restrain when in high chair
  • Place toxic substances (medicines, household cleaners, etc) on high shelf out of reach or in a locked cabinet.
  • Fence stairways at top and bottom if child has access to either end
  • Remove poisonous plants from child’s reach
  • Use outlet covers, oven and cabinet locks
  • Use an approved car seat (must be rear facing until ONE YEAR and 20 pounds!)
  • Do NOT use walkers. They are associated with skull fractures and other injuries (even if you do not have stairs) and can actually delay walking.
  • Have Poison Control Number on hand (589-8222). Syrup of Ipecac is NO LONGER RECOMMENDED BY THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS
  • Never leave child unattended around sources of water: Bathtub, toilet, swimming pools, bucket of water

SMOKING: Do not smoke around your baby, or even in the house or the car. Exposure to cigarette smoke has been linked to numerous illnesses: crib death, ear infections, pneumonia, bronchitis, allergies, and growth retardation. Keep in mind, too, that you are your child’s most trusted role model. Do you really want your child to smoke?

STRANGER ANXIETY: This is an uncomfortable feeling baby experiences when the child sees unfamiliar people. He may become uneasy, a little frightened, or cry. This is a normal and healthy reaction, and your baby is simply telling you that he recognizes the familiar people in his life. Your baby has to learn that special people go away… but they come back too! Help your child with this transition by;

Tell her when you are leaving and why (don’t just slip away without telling!)

When you leave… LEAVE! Don’t let your child’s crying change your mind and stay. The crying and protesting will lessen as your child has more experiences and begins to recognize you will come back.

IMMUNIZATIONS: The third Hepatitis B is due today.

YOUR BABY’S NEXT CHECKUP: 12 months of age