9 Month Old Baby: Developmental Milestones

Let us take a look at the set of new skills your baby learns in the ninth month.

Physical development

Growth Details Boys Girls
How much should a 9-month-old weigh 15.87 to 24.03 pounds [1] 14.55 to 22.92 pounds [2]
What should the height of a 9-month-old be 26.65 to 30 inches [1] 25.82 to 29.40 inches [2]
How much should their head size be 16.25 to 18.22 inches [1] 16.77 to 18.66 inches [2]
What is the respiratory rate of a 9-month old [3] 25 to 40 breaths per minute 25 to 40 breaths per minute
What is the heart rate of a 9-month-old [3] 80 to 120 beats per minute 80 to 120 beats per minute

What should your baby be doing at 9 months

Motor development

Most babies display smooth crawling, some of them going around with one hand and both their knees while their other hand remains occupied with their favorite toy [4]. However, if your baby is not crawling at nine months but has other flexible motor movements, then there is not much to worry as he might skip this milestone altogether [5]. The little one may even begin walking a few steps with support. He is also starting to learn the skill of bending his knees as well as getting to a sitting posture after standing [6].

Communicative development

His nonstop babbling will sound more like jabbering from which a few meaningful or familiar words may be comprehended [8]. At nine months of age, he begins understanding the meaning of what you mean to say from your tone [6].

Cognitive and behavioral development

Your baby’s brain, advancing at top speed, helps him to develop memorizing skills, making him recall certain facts of an experience for a short span [8]. He also displays a sense of humor, entertaining you as well as trying to gain your attention by blowing raspberries or making other funny sounds [4]. Along with other non-verbal communication skills displayed previously, most of them learn to clap and wave [9, 10].

Having a greater understanding of things, they get more anxious about confronting strangers. In fact, almost all of them go through an intense phase of separation anxiety by now [9], wanting to be held by their parents always, crying or getting clingy when put down. The trait of head banging (more common in boys than girls) might also be observed [11].

Sensory development

Your baby’s sharp vision enables him to identify small objects. His eyes are close to attaining its final color though there may be changes in the future months [13]. As the infant’s brain, motor skills, and eyes work in perfect coordination, he might also be able to point at objects using his fingers [10, 12]. His auditory skills improve as well, making him respond to a variety of sounds.

What should be the feeding schedule for a 9-month-old baby

What food can a 9-month-old baby eat

With their first teeth already in place, they continue eating a variety of mashed vegetables and fruits [15]. You may even introduce a platter of oatmeal, pancakes prepared from whole-grain (millets and quinoa [26]) as well as properly cooked eggs for breakfast to make your baby’s mealtime more exciting [16]. Introduce a variety of finger foods as babies have fine grasping skills by now [17]. Refrain from giving your baby honey, uncooked eggs and fish high on mercury (swordfish, shark, tilefish, mackerel, and marlin) [18, 19]. Consult your doctor prior to introducing any new food.

How much milk should a 9-month-old drink

Formula fed babies should be given about 600ml of milk daily while breastfeeding infants are to be nursed before consuming solid foods [19]. Avoid giving cow milk to your baby before his first birthday as it does not have the correct amount of iron, Vitamin C, and other nutrients that your baby requires [37].

What is the sleep schedule of a 9-month-old baby

A nine-month-old may sleep for about 14 hours a day with two naps for about an hour or two. He might go through sleep regressions, waking up in the middle of the night, at times to practice his newly acquired skills [20]. His current growth spurt is also responsible for his unsettled sleep at night, making him wake up for feeds often [21].

When to call a doctor

  • Baby vomiting for more than 12 hours or throwing up a lot as well as having fever, bulging or sunken fontanelle, breathing trouble, swollen abdomen, bile secretion (yellow or green), yellow urine, crying without tears and increased sleeping.
  • Having fever above 103°F along with other symptoms like a bad cough, fast breathing (higher than sixty breaths each minute when not crying), reduced appetite, bluish fingernails and lips, nose congestion, reduced sleep and fussy behavior. These signs may indicate an upper respiratory infection in the baby [24, 25].
  • Their head having a flat spot or being misshapen at this age, as this might be a symptom of a serious condition, plagiocephaly [27].
  • Skin getting yellow, especially around the tummy, legs, arms or sclera (white part of the eyes), along with a lack of appetite and fever might indicate jaundice [28].
  • Passing urine that is smelly or has blood, accompanied by fever, reduced weight gain, irritability and vomiting as they are symptoms of urinary tract infection [29].
  • Getting more frequent hiccups after a meal, accompanied by increased spitting, coughing and crankiness may be due to gastroesophageal reflux [30].
  • Small reddish white bumps or acne occurring on the baby’s chin, forehead, cheeks or even back, not clearing up in three months [31].
  • Swollen or reddish lumps on their breasts coupled with fever [32].
  • Having hard and dry stools, irregular bowel movement and crying before passing stools are the possible signs of constipation [35].
  • Rubbing or scratching eyes too often along with tears and discharge [33, 34].


Apart from the IPV vaccine helping to protect against polio that can be given between 6 and 18 months, there are no other immunizations for this month [36].


  1. http://www.babycenter.in/a1052194/baby-boys-growth-chart-0-to-12-months
  2. http://www.babycenter.in/a1052197/baby-girls-growth-chart-0-to-12-months
  3. http://www.emedicinehealth.com/pediatric_vital_signs/article_em.htm
  4. http://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/baby-development-9-month-old
  5. http://www.babycenter.com/404_is-it-normal-that-my-baby-isnt-crawling_6857.bc
  6. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a713/your-nine-month-olds-development
  7. http://similac.com/baby-development/9-month-old-baby-tips-advice
  8. http://www.babycenter.com/0_your-9-month-olds-development-week-1_1477294.bc
  9. http://www.whattoexpect.com/first-year/month-by-month/your-child-month-9.aspx
  10. http://www.whattoexpect.com/first-year/wave-clap/
  11. http://my.clevelandclinic.org/childrens-hospital/health-info/diseases-conditions/hic_sleep_in_your_babys_first_year/hic_head_banging_and_body_rocking
  12. http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones/milestones-9mo.html
  13. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a6508/developmental-milestones-sight
  14. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a1050142/your-childs-teething-timeline
  15. http://www.babycenter.com/0_age-by-age-guide-to-feeding-your-baby_1400680.bc?showAll=true
  16. http://www.parents.com/baby/feeding/solid-foods/feeding-9-12-month-old-baby/
  17. http://www.babycenter.com/finger-foods
  18. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a546661/which-foods-to-introduce-when
  19. http://www.babycenter.com/408_when-can-my-baby-eat-fish_1368510.bc
  20. http://www.babycenter.com/0_baby-sleep-basics-9-to-12-months_7661.bc
  21. http://www.whattoexpect.com/first-year/ask-heidi/baby-growth-spurts.aspx
  22. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a536689/vomiting-whats-normal-and-whats-not
  23. http://www.babycenter.com/0_vomiting-in-babies_9955.bc
  24. http://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=upper-respiratory-infection-uri-or-common-cold-90-P02966
  25. http://www.babycenter.com/0_respiratory-syncytial-virus-rsv-in-babies_1754.bc?showAll=true
  26. http://www.babycenter.com/0_adventurous-first-foods-for-babies_10320503.bc
  27. http://www.babycenter.com/0_plagiocephaly-flat-head-syndrome_1187981.bc
  28. http://www.babycenter.com/0_jaundice_89.bc?showAll=true
  29. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a557545/urinary-tract-infections-utis
  30. http://www.babycenter.com/404_is-it-normal-for-my-baby-to-get-hiccups-all-the-time_3652427.bc
  31. http://www.babycenter.com/0_baby-acne_72.bc
  32. http://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/your-newborn-baby-breast-lumps
  33. http://kidshealth.org/parent/pregnancy_newborn/senses/sense812m.html#
  34. http://www.parents.com/baby/health/allergy/baby-allergies/
  35. http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a79/constipation
  36. http://www.babycenter.com/shots
  37. http://www.babycenter.com/0_cows-milk-when-and-how-to-introduce-it_1334703.bc [/ref]