How Your Family Is Doing

  • Take time for yourself.
  • Take time together with your partner.
  • Spend time alone with your other children.
  • Encourage your partner to help care for your baby.
  • Choose a mature, trained, and responsible babysitter or caregiver.
  • You can talk with us about your child care choices.
  • Hold, cuddle, talk to, and sing to your baby each day.
  • Massaging your infant may help your baby go to sleep more easily.
  • Get help if you and your partner are in conflict. Let us know. We can help.

Feeding Your Baby

  • For babies at 4 months of age, human milk or formula remains the best food. Solid feeding is discouraged until about 6 months of age.
  • Avoid feeding your baby too much by following the baby’s signs of fullness
    • Leaning back
    • Turning away
  • Ask us about programs like WIC that can help get food for you if you are breastfeeding and formula for your baby if you are formula feeding.

If Breastfeeding

  • Exclusive breastfeeding for about the first 6 months of life provides ideal nutrition and supports the best possible growth and development.
  • If you are still breastfeeding, that’s great!
  • Plan for pumping and storage of breast milk.

If Formula Feeding

  • Make sure to prepare, heat, and store the formula safely.
  • Hold your baby so you can look at each other while feeding.
  • Do not prop the bottle.
  • Do not give your baby a bottle in the crib.


  • Use a rear-facing car safety seat in the back seat in all vehicles.
  • Always wear a seat belt and never drive after using alcohol or drugs.
  • Keep small objects and plastic bags away from your baby.
  • Keep a hand on your baby on any high surface from which she can fall and be hurt.
  • Prevent burns by setting your water heater so the temperature at the faucet is 120°F or lower.
  • Do not drink hot drinks when holding your baby.
  • Never leave your baby alone in bathwater, even in a bath seat or ring.
  • The kitchen is the most dangerous room. Don’t let your baby crawl around there; use a playpen or high chair instead.
  • Do not use a baby walker.

Your Changing Baby

  • Keep routines for feeding, nap time, and bedtime.


  • Put your baby to sleep on her back.
    • In a crib that meets current safety standards, with no drop-side rail and slats no more than 23/8 inches apart. Find more information on the Consumer Product Safety Commission Web site at
    • If your crib has a drop-side rail, keep it up and locked at all times. Contact the crib company to see if there is a device to keep the drop-side rail from falling down.
    • Keep soft objects and loose bedding such as comforters, pillows, bumper pads, and toys out of the crib.
    • Lower your baby’s mattress.
    • If using a mesh playpen, make sure the openings are less than ¼ inch apart.


  • Learn what things your baby likes and does not like.
  • Encourage active play.
    • Offer mirrors, floor gyms, and colorful toys to hold.
    • Tummy time—put your baby on his tummy when awake and you can watch.
  • Promote quiet play.
    • Hold and talk with your baby.
    • Read to your baby often.


  • Give your baby a pacifier or his fingers or thumb to suck when crying.

Healthy Teeth

  • Go to your own dentist twice yearly. It is important to keep your teeth healthy so that you don’t pass bacteria that causes tooth decay on to your baby.
  • Do not share spoons or cups with your baby or use your mouth to clean the baby’s pacifier.
  • Use a cold teething ring if your baby has sore gums with teething.
  • Clean gums and teeth (as soon as you see the first tooth) 2 times per day with a soft cloth or soft toothbrush with a small smear of fluoride toothpaste (the size of a grain of rice).

What to Expect at Your Baby’s 6 Month Visit

We will talk about

  • Introducing solid food
  • Getting help with your baby
  • Home and car safety
  • Brushing your baby’s teeth
  • Reading to and teaching your baby
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