Your baby is 8 months old! It’s probably difficult to even remember what life was like before this little ball of light came into it, right? At this age, baby seems to learn something new every day. It sure is sweet watching them adapt to the world around them — especially since that love bug is likely all about you right now. Staring at you, snuggling on you, crying at the mere suggestion they might let someone else hold them.
Okay, so that last part isn’t the dreamiest development your 8-month-old baby will hit. Still, it’s heartwarming in its own right since separation anxiety signals a strong parent-baby bond. Here are a few other things you can expect from your babbling, cruising, cute-as-all-get out baby at 8 months.
Your 8-Month-Old Baby’s Development & Growth Milestones
How much should an 8-month-old weigh?
It’s easy to fall into the trap of worrying that your child isn’t at the precise right weight. But listen, your baby’s doctor is going to be tracking their growth through well-baby visits. If they’re ever concerned about your baby’s growth progression, they’ll let you know. Otherwise, you can rest easy knowing your little one is on the right track.
So, what is the average weight for an 8-month-old baby? Well, according to the World Health Organization, the average weight for an 8-month-old girl is 17.5 pounds. The average weight for an 8-month-old boy is 19 pounds.
How much and how often do you feed an 8-month-old baby?
Your baby is getting bigger, moving about more and babbling up a storm. So, it’s only natural to think they might need more breastmilk or formula than they’ve been getting so far. However, per Stanford Children’s Health, your 8-month-old baby needs 30 to 32 ounces per day — same as last month. And, same as last month, this should be spread out between 3 to 5 feedings per day.
Obviously, this is trickier when you’re breastfeeding since you can’t exactly measure your output as baby drinks. While your baby’s feeding patterns have likely changed a little since you introduced solids, your breast milk remains a vital source of nutrition. As such, make sure you breastfeed before offering any solids at mealtime (at this age, solids are called “complementary foods”).
What solids can an 8-month-old eat, and can they have water?
While baby’s breastmilk or formula intake stayed about the same, they probably should be eating a little more in the way of solid foods. The CDC suggests giving your child something to eat or drink every 2 to 3 hours, about 5 to 6 times per day. Try 5 to 8 tablespoons of single-grain cereal mixed with formula or breastmilk, along with 2 to 3 tablespoons of strained or soft mashed fruits and veggies each, daily. Good solid food choices for an 8-month-old baby include apples, avocado, carrot, cheddar cheese, egg yolk, quinoa, mango, pasta, pumpkin, zucchini, turkey, tofu, sweet potatoes and rice — just make sure they’re cooked until soft (some are naturally soft, in which case cooking isn’t necessary).
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) discourages parents from giving babies younger than 1 fruit juice. If you do decide to give some to your 8-month-old, make sure you choose a pasteurized, 100 percent version with no sugar added. Even then, limit it to 4 ounces a day. You can give your baby water, but make sure it is cooled boiled water. Also, water should not replace breast milk or formula.
How much should an 8-month-old be sleeping?
Your infant may be sleeping through the night now, which is a nice change of pace. If they aren’t, hang in there! According to the National Sleep Foundation, 70 to 80 percent of babies sleep through the night by 9 months of age. Right now, your baby still needs 12 to 15 total hours of sleep per day, with 9 to 12 of those typically taking place during the night. The rest of the sleep is spread out between naps ranging from as little as 30 minutes to as long as four hours.
Around this time, babies often develop separation anxiety (they love you!). This can lead to disruption of sleep patterns since baby might fight sleep just to get more snuggle time with you. The separation anxiety should ease up on its own eventually, so don’t worry on that front. But if your baby continues to be restless at night or have trouble sleeping, just run it by their doctor to rule out any other underlying issues.
Your 8-Month-Old Baby’s Physical, Social, And Cognitive Milestones
How much can an 8-month-old baby see?
Your little cutie is seeing the world pretty well now. Their eye movements are more controlled. Their body-eye coordination is getting better every day. Their eyes are working together now, which means two big things: No. 1, they probably aren’t going cross-eyed every time they see their own nose and, No. 2, they now have depth perception. And while an 8-month-old baby’s eyes aren’t as sensitive to color as adults, it’s thought that babies can see all colors by this age.
Should my 8-month-old be sitting up and/or crawling?
Your little one is full of energy these days! We probably don’t have to tell you that 8-month-olds are total jiggleworms whenever you’re trying to change their diaper or feed them. But in addition to all that wiggling, your baby might be making some big moves. By this age, most babies can (and do, often) roll over in both directions. Wondering if your 8-month-old should be sitting up? While many babies can sit up unassisted at this age, it’s possible your little one still needs a little extra support.
If your baby is sitting up on their own, you might notice that they rock back and forth when on all fours. In which case, you’re about to have a crawler on your hands! Most babies can crawl by 9 months of age, meaning your nugget will be zooming all over the place soon, if not already. Just be prepared — they also like to put things in their mouth at this age, and anything in the path of their crawling is fair game.
When should you be concerned about baby not crawling? Here’s the thing: some babies never really crawl. They might get around by scooting their little booties all over the place. They might Army-crawl along on their tummies. This could last until around 9 ½ to 10 months when they decide to just skip the crawling phase and go straight to walking. As long as baby is using each arm and leg equally, you don’t have to be concerned.
Can an 8-month-old baby walk?
Your 8-month-old baby may not be content to just view the world from shin-down anymore. They’ll watch everyone around them — like you, Mama! — standing and walking upright, and they’ll want in on the action. So, at this point, baby might pull to stand every chance they get. After they’ve mastered that, they’ll probably work up the never to go from standing and holding on to holding on and cruising along the edges of a coffee table or couch.
As far as when baby will start walking, there’s a wide range of what’s considered “normal.” Although rare, some babies do take their first steps (albeit wobbly ones) this month. However, most babies become walkers between 11 months and 18 months of age.
Can an 8-month-old baby talk?
While your baby has been babbling for a while now, there hasn’t been meaning attached to those utterances yet (yes, including “mama” and “dada” — sorry!). But at 8-months-old, your baby understands language more than ever. They understand the word “no,” although they may not always want to listen to it. Baby recognizes the sound of their own name, too. They’re probably trying to mimic the sounds you make, meaning you’ll probably get a lot of consonant gibberish like “bababababa.” And while most babies aren’t talking at 8 months of age, they communicate through sounds, gestures, and facial expressions.
While most babies begin to meaningfully use words closer to their first birthday, it isn’t impossible for an 8-month-old baby to talk. It would be more of the exception to the rule, though. And, alternately, some babies don’t begin to really speak until after their first birthday. At this age, baby not speaking isn’t a cause for concern. If they aren’t babbling or responding to their own name, though, give their doctor a heads up.
Your 8-Month-Old Baby’s Health
Does an 8-month-old need a checkup?
Your last well-baby check was at the 6-month mark, so you might be getting a little antsy to see baby’s doctor and check in. Feel free to go ahead and set up baby’s next appointment if it makes you feel better, but your little one probably won’t go back in until the standard 9-month-old well-baby visit.
As always, touch base with your doctor if baby presents any troubling symptoms. These might include extreme constipation, chronic diarrhea, persistent fever, a cough that gets worse over time or possible developmental delays.
What immunizations does an 8-month-old get?
Unless you are on a delayed schedule, baby likely won’t have to get any vaccines at 8-months-old.
Written by Julie Sprankles.