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5 Month Old Baby Development Milestones & Activities To Help

Growth & Development / Last Updated on Jul 03, 2023 / Vetted by Team BabyG
5 Month Old Baby Development Milestones, 300K+ Babies Achievement Revealed

Congratulations, your baby is 5 months old! Your baby is a little stronger now, smiles more brighter now and well she/he is a rockstar at rolling around. Besides that they are hungry more, put things in their mouth much more often and what not. Keeping track of a 5 month old baby's developmental milestones can be tricky but let us help you with a comprehensive list. In case you have missed last month's milestone checklist, you can access the 4-month-old baby milestone here.

In case you are feeling overwhelmed, we’ve got you covered. With data gathered both scientifically and statistically from the 300,000+ user base of babies in 0-3 years on the BabyG App. Not only can you check your 5-month-old’s baby milestones, but you will also be able to benchmark your baby’s development against 1000s of other babies who are at the same stage with comprehensive monthly baby milestone reports. This will help you answer all your concerns and take your baby’s development in the right direction.

While you will find everything you need to know about your 5-month-old baby's milestone, feel free to reach out to the BabyG team via our 24x7 chat support available on the app. Our experts help parents with all their queries, no matter how big or small.

Note: In the case of premature babies, the baby’s ability to achieve the milestones is calculated from the due date, not from the birth date.

What Milestones Should A 5 Month Old Have?

Physical Development Milesones For 5 Months Baby

At the peak of 5 months old, your baby is growing physically more stronger to support their voluntary movement. They grab things more easily and well, a master at putting things in their mouth. A nightmare for parents, but what can we say besides it is an integral milestone for your young one.

1. Tracking Objects With Head Control

Your child will be able to track objects better with their eyes and by moving their head in said directions without any wobbling. You will also notice that they can follow movements of such objects placed at varying distances around them. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 93% Babies

Importance: A baby’s eye-tracking skills grow exponentially in the term between 2-6 months. Such visual tracking skills with their head strengthen neck muscles, providing better head control. Also, it expands their ability to focus on a subject building visual perception and spatial awareness. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
During these months such eye-motor coordination is still continuing to improve. That said, if your baby is still not tracking with their eyes or their eyes seems uncoordinated then you might want to speak to your pediatrician.

2. Better Arm Strength

Your 5-month-old will showcase better arm strength during tummy time. They will be able to lift their upper body up using both their arms when in a face-down position.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 83% Babies

Importance: Developing strength in their arms is a great indicator to know that your baby's muscles are slowly getting stronger. The milestone promotes joint, arm, back and chest strength. All of which lay the groundwork for crawling in later months.

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
If your baby is new to tummy time, they might need time to develop said skills. Try to be patient with your child and ensure that you keep the routine consistent with motor developing activities. If your child is unable to hold themselves up by their arms by the next month, you’ll need to run it through your pediatrician.

Get a better grasp of your child’s tummy time ability at 5 months old.

3. Palmar Grasp (Without Thumb)

At this age, you will observe that your child has a stronger grip now. Although it is common for babies not to use their thumbs for such a palmar grasp. With time they learn to engage their thumb in their grip. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 78% Babies

Importance: Once the reflex starts to recede by this month, the development of voluntary palmar grasp helps build fine motor skills like finger grip. It also poses as a great way for the child to venture into object interaction at their pace, exploring shapes, textures and other elements around them. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
If your child is healthy overall, has no signs of limping and optimal strength then there is no cause for concern. Help your child build on their grip and hand muscles with activities centered around gross motor and muscle development.

4. Extending Body Forward

Your child will reach for objects that fall from their hand. They may extend their hand or lean their body forward when sitting with support. During this, as your baby leans forward to grab a fallen toy they will be able to come back to the original position. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 68% Babies

Importance: The act of extending their body forward, retrieving an object and coming back to a stable position is a sign that your baby is learning how to control various parts of their body and maintain a balance. Sitting with support allows for the strengthening of the back muscles as well. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
This milestone might take up to 6 to 8 months to complete with consistent effort and loads of fun activities. Make sure to engage your child in assisted sitting and motor exercises to help them develop these skills.

5. Sitting without Support

This refers to when your child stays stable in a sitting position without support for a small duration.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 49% Babies

Importance: If your baby remains stable for a few moments when sitting without support it implies improved strength in their neck, head and back. This provides the core stability to sit unassisted. It indicates your child is getting the grasp of balancing themselves and is on the right track of development. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
This is not a cause of worry just yet. It might take your child another month or two to sit fully unsupported. Activities that stimulate gross motor skills will help your child achieve this milestone much more easily.

5 Months Baby Activities To Reach Physical Milestones

Here are some of the 5-month-old baby physical milestone activities to help your child develop their gross and fine motor skills right from infancy

1. Neck Movement

To help your child excel in the ‘Better Arm Strength’ milestone, try this simple exercise. During tummy time, get a toy in your baby’s eye line and direct is vertically up. This will encourage her to raise her body with the help of her hands while lifting her neck.  This not only helps to strengthen arm muscles but also builds the foundation for crawling. 

Frequency: Once a day for a week

2. Sitting Experience 

Getting your child to sit without assistance can be tricky. Try this activity to build better back muscles for ‘Sitting without Support’. Hold your baby up carefully by their underarm and place them on your legs, so that you are taking her weight as she “sits”. Start for a few seconds and increase the time slowly as you sense your child can bear their own weight.  

Frequency: Once a day for a week

3. Holding Objects

Help your child to grow their ‘Palmar Grasp’ with this exercise. Lay your baby on a comfortable bed or a sheet and place a big soft toy in her arms. Allow her to get a grip on this toy. Gradually, give her objects of varying shapes like a smooth toy or a balloon to get their confidence up to boost hand coordination and other motor skills. 

Frequency: Once a day for 2-3 weeks

Learning can be made fun by such five-month-old baby activities that aid in physical development. Discover more such engaging activities on the BabyG App, to help your child grow developmentally one milestone at a time.

Cognitive Development Milestones For 5 Months Baby

Around the age of five months, you child is slowly understanding the basics of cause and effect. They are more inquisitive and aware of their surroundings. They love to be held by you and are taking sensory information, like a champ. Here’s a brief of the cognitive milestones they are hitting by now.

1. Oral Exploration

Your child will explore objects carefully and take them in the mouth to explore the taste.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 94% Babies

Importance: The action of taking things to the mouth is a natural instinct that allows your infant to gather sensory information while building on their coordination and oral motor skills. The precision of grabbing and mouthing objects helps them explore, and discover textures, shapes and tastes. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
If your baby is not mouthing then primarily it isn't a cause for concern. In turn, look for causes if your baby seems disinterested or adverse to sensory objects. You can introduce your child to object exploration with the help of child-safe teethers that will encourage them to explore.

2. Showcases interest in Surroundings 

5-month-old infants are keener to explore new surroundings with their eyes. They will show interest and focus on new things around them while responding with looks of fascination. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 98% Babies

Importance: Keeping a lookout for things in their environment, allows your little one to focus and recognize shapes, colors and patterns, further building their cognitive abilities. It is based on grasping visual cues which helps in developing their depth perception. This is key for your child to view the world in-depth. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
A great way to instill such curiosity is to introduce books with vibrant colors or have a fun day at the park to refresh yourself and your child. However, if your child seems overly disinterested in their surroundings or has difficulty focusing on a subject, you may want to bring it up to your child's doctor at the next visit.

3. Focuses Better on Moving Objects

They will show interest in moving objects and will focus on the said object for longer periods than they could before. Take a slow-moving fan for example, your child will enjoy following its movements with their eyes for a while.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 92% Babies

Importance: Around this age range, the posterior orienting system develops considerably. This refers to the growth of areas that encourage voluntary eye moments and the ability to direct their gazes toward different objects in the eye line. All in all a leap in visual development, concentration and object recognition.

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
As mentioned above, if they're still not showcasing signs of focusing on objects it is recommended that speak with your pediatrician.

4. Likes To Be Lifted 

You'll notice that your little one is eager to be scooped up into your arms, especially when you lift them up from a sleeping position. Often they might even as far let out a cry if you sit down with them in your arms.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 74% Babies

Importance: Primarily your baby craves to be soothed when in distress and the action of being lifted in their parent's arms helps them achieve that. Interestingly, children by the age of five months expect to be picked in their parent's arms and the failure to do so may lead them to orient away from the parent. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
The first course of action would be to look for any signs of discomfort. Once that concern is eliminated it is better to remind yourself that each child is unique. It is okay if their form of receiving comfort does not align with yours. A great tip would be to be on the lookout for alternatives, which can be learned through quality time and bonding activities.

5. Recognition and Reaction

Your child will demonstrate the ability to recognize their toys and objects. They will do this by showing attention, getting excited, and making sounds. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 83% Babies

Importance: As discussed before, the ability to recognize toys and objects promotes the development of early functional memory. Such reactions and excitements are all bits of their growing personality. Feel free to smile and laugh along with your baby.

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
All infants have their own growth curve which means they might react within the developmental means available to them. Some may react quietly, some may giggle, the others may even shake their hands and legs in excitement. Such reactions are possible when your baby feels secure in communicating. Allow yourself to be more expressive around your baby; let them learn such reactions which they might imitate soon enough.

6. Stays Awake Longer

Your baby might now stay awake for longer periods, extending up to two hours. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 94% Babies

Importance: It is natural for your child to have longer wakeful periods as their sleep patterns are evolving and they are getting more shut-eye at night. These extended periods aid your baby in interacting with their environment and you more than they did before. Providing a great leeway for cognitive and social development.

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
It is not really a cause for concern if your little one is sleeping more than usual. It simply could be a growth spurt thing, which is completely normal. Just keep a check on their nighttime sleep patterns and irregularities. Setting bedtime routines for healthy sleep can stimulate cognitive growth in infants.

7. Cause and Effect

Your five-month-old will begin to understand cause and effect for sound-producing toys or objects. For example, they will grasp that shaking a rattle or pressing a piano tile will produce a sound.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 74% Babies

Importance: The act of shaking the rattle here encourages voluntary exploration laying the foundation for understanding relationships between objects. This aids them to predict and manipulate said outcomes later on as they gain more familiarity with the subject. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
Encourage your baby to explore his/her surroundings, and let them familiarize themselves with it. Bond with them with engaging activities to ease them into such concepts.

5 Months Baby Activities To Reach Cognitive Milestones

Here are some of the 5-month-old baby cognitive milestone activities to help your child develop their learning skills right from infancy

1. Reinforce Places and Toys

To encourage ‘Showcases interest in Surroundings’, make a routine to take your baby on the tour of the house. Relay to him how these appliances or objects work. This will slowly build their understanding of the elements surrounding them, boosting receptive and expressive moments and vocabulary. 

Frequency: Every week 3-4 times, for a month

2. Discovery with My Mouth

Stimulate Oral Explorationwith this excersise. Give your child varying types of teething rings and let them explore it at their own pace. Make sure that these are hygienic and size-appropriate for your young one. 

Frequency: Couple times a day, for few weeks

3. Bath Time Fun

This could be your new bedtime routine to encourage your little one to Stays Awake Longer in the day time. As your baby takes a bath, call out the name of the body part before you pour water on it. Watch his reaction and the sounds he makes. This will help them associate words with body parts and help them expect where the water will be poured next.

Frequency: Instill it in daily routine

Communication Development Milestones For 5 Months Baby

Unlike the previous months your child will be more vocal in their opinions. They will imitate the sounds you make, while expressing when they need help. Learn more how your 5 month old will communicate with you in this month.

1. Conveys Frustration

After failing to get something, with no success despite a few tries, your 5-month-old infant will look at you while they cry. This could be wholly in hopes of assistance or comfort.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 90% Babies

Importance: If your child looks for you when in need of comfort, then it means that they feel secure with you, and when you respond optimally it promotes trust and confidence. It is a milestone in self-expression and understanding the means required to cope.

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
If your baby does not seek comfort in distress even from the parents or familiar adults and/or is difficult to soothe, then the first course of action would be to look for signs of pain. However, if that is not the case then you will need to bring this up with your baby’s pediatrician as it can be a potential indicator of developmental delay.

2. Laughs at Specific Sounds and Actions

Your 5-month-old will laugh at certain actions and sounds that they find funny. Such actions will become triggers and incite laughs when your baby remembers them later. So, when you show them a particular toy, they will actively remember the sound that made them laugh and will get excited in anticipation of hearing it once again. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 93% Babies

Importance: Development of early memory recall and such non-verbal communication skills from infancy builds positive affects on their language and cognitive skills later on in life. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
Babies develop at their own pace, so it is natural for them to be limited in their capabilities. Help your baby develop such skills by fun and regular sensory activities, that will encourage them to focus and react to such sensory stimuli.

3. Imitates Sounds

You little one can imitate tongue sounds or other mouth actions like bringing the tongue out while making sound with lips when air blows out etc. Your baby will make simple sounds like ‘ma, pa, ba, da,’ etc if you prompt them and demonstrate how to make the sounds. They will also try to imitate other simple sounds and words by babbling. They will mostly be able to babble Dental (sounds of letter T/D) and Velar sounds (sound of letter K/G). 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 72% Babies

Importance: The ability and drive to imitate stimulates a two way conversation between you and the baby. This forms the early groundwork for building conversation skills. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
Don't be discouraged if your young one does not use these particular sounds to communicate. Allow them to feel confident and explore such sounds at their own pace. Actively using motherese and daily interactions can be excellent yet easy tools to use around the house.

5 Months Baby Activities To Reach Communication Milestones

Here are some of the 5-month-old baby communication milestone activities to help your 5-month-old baby's language development right from infancy

1. Expressions

Understanding expressions are an important part of learning human behaviour. Help your child Convey frustration by introducing them to the facial expressions. Alternate between funny, grumpy, laughing, crying, frowning, happy as they follow you along.

Frequency: Couple times a day, for few weeks

2. Speaking Differently

To encourage your child to ‘Imitates Sounds’ as you speak in different styles and tone with your baby. You can talk dramatically, in a sing-song voice as well as talk slow. You can also read them the best bedtime stories while altering your voice as you follow the pace of the story. All of these are to keep your baby amused in the activity enough for them to interested enough to engage. 

Frequency: Instill it in daily routine

Social & Emotional Development Milestones For 5 Months Baby

1. Prefers One Individual

Your baby will also show a preference for one parent/individual over others whom the baby sees every day. For example, your baby may calm down more easily if the mother consoles them over other people in the house.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 89% Babies

Importance: This preference towards one individual is often times due to constant affection, responsiveness and interaction with the primary caregiver. The bond keeps your baby secure enough to have their mood regulated by the said individual. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
It is fine if your baby doesn't showcase preference towards a particular parent. But if your baby reaches out to strangers rather than their primary caregiver for comfort you will need to discuss it with their pediatrician as it can be a sign of developmental delay.

2. Understands Tone

Your little one will now pick up on different vocal tones like happy, sad, angry, etc. And they will react accordingly to the tone they hear.

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 76% Babies

Importance: By understanding the tone of voice your little one perceives emotions at play. While they might detect negative tones early on better, as they grow older they might even match such information with voices and facial expressions.

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
There is no cause for concern just yet, allow you child the time and space to explore such emotions. Try to communicate with your young one, to build on these experiences.

3. Reacts to Their Name

When you call their name, your baby will turn their head and pay attention to what is being said to them or about them. 

Completion Rate on BabyG App: 69% Babies

Importance: This is a great milestone for babies as this is the beginning of your baby learning the concept of ‘I’ and ‘Myself’. They are learning that they have an identity. 

What if my baby does not complete this milestone?
A great indicator to rest assured is to check if your infant reacts to loud noises and other sensory elements accordingly. As for this particular milestone, according to the American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA), can take kids up to 9 months to reach.

5 Months Baby Activities To Reach Social & Emotional Milestones 

Here are some of the 5-month-old baby social & emotional milestone activities to help your child express and manage emotions right from infancy

1. Mirror

Here’s an easy-to-do activity to do from the comfort of your home. This can be used to promote the concept of myself as relayed in the ‘Reacts to their Name’ milestone. Hold your infant close and up to a mirror. Next, call out her name, verbally relay how beautiful they look, making sure that they look at themselves through the mirror during the exercise.  

Frequency: Every week 3-4 times, for a month

2. Signs of Affection 

Take your baby in your arms, talk to them affectionately, and pamper them with kisses. This helps build a strong sense of security, which is necessary for mood regulation and promoting bonding as encouraged in the ‘Prefers one Individual’ milestone. 

Frequency: Instill it in daily routine

What should be my baby’s weight, height and head circumference at 5 month?

Here are the average data to track your 5-month baby's physical growth and development. If you are worried looking at the data, don't be. Hop into your BabyG app to chat with the team; they’ll help you clear your doubts about your little one's growth curve in more detail:

Average weight for 5 month boys: 7.5 kg
Average weight for 5 month girls: 6.9 kg

Average height for boys: 65.9 cm
Average height for girls: 64 cm

Average head circumference for boys: 42.6 cm
Average head circumference for girls: 41.5 cm

5 Month Old Feeding & Sleep Milestones

5 Months Baby Feeding Schedule

It is natural for your baby to be hungry constantly if they are exclusively breastfed. Here’s a table to keep track of their feeding schedule. 

Breastfed Babies: 6-8 feedings per day, 10-20 minutes each.
Formula-fed Babies: 5-6 feedings per day, 4-5 ounces (120-150 mL) of formula.

If you are looking for ways to track your baby’s intake in a day more efficiently, infant feeding trackers can be a huge help for an on-the-go parent.

5 Months Baby Sleep Schedule

A 5-month baby, in terms of milestones regarding sleep, will likely sleep better than they did before through the night. They will still enjoy long daytime naps; they are newborns after all. However, an infant this age will stay awake longer for about two hours, in the day. All in all, they will sleep for a total of 15 hours per day.

When To Worry About 5 Month Old Baby Milestones?

These are the signs to look out for concerning your little one's development:

  1. Still do not focus on an object and track it with their eyes
  2. Do not respond to loud noises or sounds in general
  3. Does not smile in response 
  4. Lacks head control 
  5. Doesn't babble or make sounds in response
  6. Seems limp or overly stiff
  7. Does not recognize their primary caregiver
  8. Disinterested in objects around them
  9. Cries without stopping, and does not calm down after soothing. 

How Do I Support My 5 Month Baby Development?

Supporting your child during early childhood is integral to unlocking their lifelong learning potential. These are the prime years to help them gain an understanding of concepts while stimulating vital developmental milestones. 

In the fifth month, your baby is eager to respond to the elements surrounding them. They are gaining an understanding of concepts such as cause and effect, expressions, and exploring their surroundings as they develop stronger muscles necessary for crawling and other activities later on.  These can be done through bonding activities, setting better nighttime routines, encouraging babbling, and many more. 

To discover an easy way to keep track of your baby's milestones, sleep schedules, feeds, poop, and pee patterns head to the BabyG app, which has an excellent early childhood development program early childhood development program. This helps detect any early warning signs and helps you rest assured of your young ones' development. New parents are bound to be wary yet curious in these uncharted territories. Our in-app trackers, schedules, live chats, and many more aim to address all your burning questions in the best possible way. So you can unlock the full potential of your little bundle of joy.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How Much Solids Should A 5 Month Old Have?

It is recommended that your infant be exclusively breastfed for about 6 month of their life, you can hold of introducing solids until then. If it is unavoidable due to reasons, a 5 month old can have have up to 1 or 2 tbs of strained vegetable or fruit.

2. How Often Should Feed Solids To 5 Month Old?

If you are feeding solids to your baby, they can be fed up to 1 or 2 times in a day.

3. What Is The Best Way To Introduce Solids At 5 Months?

You can Introduce solid foods by preparing fresh pureed vegetables or fruit for your infant.

4. What Are Fine Motor Skills For A 5 Month Old Baby?

A five month old showcases palmer grasp as well as better hand-eye coordination and body exploration with their hands.

5. How Many Oz Should A 5 Month Old Eat?

A 5 month old can consume up to 26 to 39 oz formula in a day.

6. What Food Should A 5 Month Old Baby Eat?

Breastmilk is the ideal food for your infant, to help them optimally grow. In case breastmilk is not an option, a close second to it can be formula milk for 5 months baby.

7. Does A 5 Month Old Baby Need To Poop Everyday?

Parents are often worried when their infant does not poop every day. In most breastfed babies, there is little to no human waste produced as every nutrient is absorbed by the body readily. So if your baby is not distressed, crying often and gaining healthy weight every month, the lack of daily bowel moment is no cause for concern.

8. Why Does 5 Month Old Baby Slams Legs When Sleeping?

This is a sign that they are stretching their legs for gaining better flexibility and it completely normal, so parents be concern free.

9. Why My 5 Month Old Baby Is Not Drinking Breast Milk?

Look out for cues that may hinder your baby from drinking optimally. It could be your diet or medication that can hamper the taste of the milk. If you cannot get your child to take the breast you can try giving them the bottle.

Being a parent is no easy feat, and that's why Team BabyG is here to support you through this exciting journey of your little one’s growth. We believe that every baby deserves a great start in their life and our early development program helps parents to provide the best parenting, backed by science, to raise happy and curious babies. BabyG... more

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