Besides nutrition children need appropriate stimulation in order to reach their development potential. Both parents and health workers need to know the normal developmental milestones.

Developmental milestones

Developmental milestone Normal limits
Can lift head when prone 4 weeks
Social smile 4–6 weeks
Good head control 3–6 months
Turns to origin of the sound 2–3 months
Extends hand to grasp a toy 2–3 months
Sitting without support 5–9 months
Standing 7–13 months
Walking 12–18 months
Talking 9–24 months
  • Any child whose milestones are delayed needs careful assessment to identify the cause and offered appropriate therapy. If you cannot deal with the problem refer.
  • Children need simple culturally appropriate toys to play with. Parents can be taught how to make simple toys with materials available in the home.
  • Encourage parents to spend time with their young children. Encourage parents to talk to their children often, even the babies; they won’t understand the words, but they will learn about interaction.