Your 10-Month-Old Baby’s Development

Major milestones and everyday tips for your baby at 10 months old

At 10 months, there's usually a turning point for a lot of babies as they make progress on new developmental milestones such as standing, stacking items, and feeding themselves. Your little one is fast approaching their first birthday and every day brings a lot of new and exciting things to learn—for both of you!

10-month-old baby milestones and development
Illustration by Joshua Seong, Verywell

Your Growing Baby

By 10 months old, most girl babies weigh an average of 18.7 pounds, while boys weigh around 20.2 pounds. Most girl babies are around 28.1 inches long, while boys are 28.9 inches long.

Developmental Milestones

Here are some of the physical and mental developments you can look for this month:

Body

  • Moves from the stomach to a seated position
  • Squats down from a standing position
  • Pulls up to a standing position from the floor, using furniture
  • Crawls
  • Stands up unassisted
  • Walks and/or takes steps
  • Points or goes for items they want
  • Grabs finger foods and feeds themselves
  • Babbles and imitates words
  • Waves “bye-bye”
  • Starts to say simple words like “Mama” and “Dada”
  • "Scooches" butt
  • Rolls from back to front and front to back
  • Can stack play items, cups, or bowls

Brain

  • Can see colors well now
  • Develops specific preferences for tastes and textures
  • Shows curiosity and explores how things work
  • May express separation anxiety
  • Shows new personality traits
  • Attaches meaning to words—like getting shoes when you say you're going “bye-bye”
  • Understands simple one-word phrases or requests
  • Loves music

When to Be Concerned

If your little one has not attempted crawling, is not able to roll over, and does not respond to words from you, be sure to speak to your pediatrician.

A Day in the Life

At 10 months old, your baby is a busy little bee. They are all about exploring the world around them, trying to open doors to discover what’s behind them, and testing boundaries (and yes, probably your patience). Your typical daily schedule may look like something like this:

  • 7 a.m.—Wake-up call. How do babies have so much energy right away in the morning?
  • 8 a.m.—Breakfast is done, time to explore and play.
  • 10 a.m.—Morning nap
  • 12:30 p.m.—Lunch
  • 2 p.m.—Afternoon nap
  • 5:30 p.m.—Dinner and playtime
  • 7 p.m.—Bedtime routine begins

Baby Care Basics

One of the most important ways to care for your baby at 10 months old is through play. Your baby learns everything through play right now—from what to believe about the world, to physical skills, to how to love and trust! If your little one attends daycare or is home with a caregiver, be sure to ask what type of interactive games, activities, and toys they are offering for your baby. If you are home with your little one, try incorporating some of the following play activities into your daily routine:

  • Playing peek-a-boo
  • Stacking colorful blocks together
  • Playing along to your baby’s lead, like “answering” the phone or accepting small gifts from them
  • Singing interactive songs together, like “Pat-a-Cake”
  • Rolling a ball back and forth

When talking about baby care, it’s also important to include your own care in that conversation. If you are an at-home parent, and especially if your baby is still taking two-a-day naps, it can start to feel like you are trapped by your baby’s sleep schedule. While consistency is important for your baby, know that once in a while, it's okay to shake things up and skip a nap. Get out of the house, schedule a play date with friends, enroll your baby in gym daycare for an hour so you can get a workout in, or just get outside more. Taking care of yourself and making sure your mental, physical, and emotional health is part of your daily routine is just as important as making sure your baby gets their nap for the day.

Feeding & Nutrition

By 10 months, your baby is a finger food pro! Your little one is likely eating a full and balanced diet that includes:

  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Grains
  • Yogurt
  • Meats

While your baby can eat a wide variety of foods, especially as they get more teeth in, you will still want to avoid common choking hazards. Some of the most harmful choking hazards to children under the age of 1 include popcorn, raisins, nuts, hard candy, grapes, and hot dogs. If you decide to give your infant hot dogs and grapes, be sure to slice them in a vertical pattern first, so the pieces are long, not circular. Circular pieces are more likely to get stuck in a baby’s throat and can quickly cut off their air supply.

As your baby eats more finger foods and becomes more adventurous in their eating, it’s also a good idea for you to make sure you are up-to-date on your infant CPR certification so you know what to do in the event that your baby does choke.

Chances are, you've started using grab-and-go baby food pouches by this point. While they are incredibly convenient, you may want to try to limit their use by 10 months. Food pouches are very easy for infants to eat in a short amount of time, but whenever possible, it’s best to give your little one more time to process and digest their meal. Sitting down to finger foods is always preferred and gives them the opportunity to work on hand-eye-mouth coordination as well.

If you haven’t already, 10 months is also a good age to introduce silverware with each meal so your little one can get accustomed to using it. Some babies will take to using silverware more naturally than others, so if your little one doesn’t get the hang of using that spoon right away, just keep trying! Offer a spoon, let them take time to explore using it, and be patient.

Remember, your baby will learn from watching you, so sit down together for meals as a family and model the use of silverware. As your little one learns how to use silverware, you may want to invest in some bibs with pouches to catch the dribbles, floor mats for around the high chair, and keep a rag or hand vacuum ready—or your family’s furry friend if you have one!

You can also introduce a sippy cup to your baby for meals and for formula and breast milk instead of a bottle.

What About Weaning?

As you approach your baby’s first birthday, you may start to wonder if you should consider weaning your little one from the breast. You should know there is no medical recommendation or evidence that supports the common belief that babies should not breastfeed past a year of age. In fact, the World Health Organization recommends children should be breastfed until two years of age, or as the mother sees fit.

How long you choose to nurse your child is entirely up to you. You may breastfeed well beyond a year, or you can wean from the breast but still pump breast milk for your child. You could also decide to switch over to infant formula, or some other combination of any or all of your options. As long as your baby is getting the nutrition they need, pick the method and schedule that works the best for you, your child, and your family.

Sleep

At 10 months old, some babies may begin dropping their morning nap and instead take just one long afternoon nap. You will find that as babies transition out of taking two-a-day naps, there will be an adjustment period where your little one might be a little more tired and cranky than usual. You may need to adjust the time of the afternoon nap (moving it up earlier as your baby adjusts) or put your baby to bed at an earlier time if they simply can’t make it through the day without falling asleep. Most babies at this age are sleeping well through the night, with occasional periods of disrupted sleep thanks to illnesses or teething.

If you have a baby who is not sleeping through the night yet, there are a few strategies you can try to increase sleep quality:

  • Try sleep training: Learn more about the different methods and know that sleep training does not mean locking your baby in a room to cry themselves to sleep. Effective sleep training is a gradual, gentle process that can be effective.
  • Don't interrupt daily naps: Good daytime naps actually promote a better night of sleep.
  • Ask for help from a family member: If you decide to try sleep training, it can be very difficult to initiate on your own. Even the small act of having someone else put your baby down to sleep can change up the routine enough to make a difference to your baby.
  • Consider a sleep coach: Sleep can be a skill that is taught to babies, just like they will learn to use a spoon or talk. Although the price of a sleep coach can be high, many families find that hiring a sleep coach can be effective in only one session—so it’s an investment well worth the price.
What You Need to Know About Sleep Training Your Baby

Health & Safety

This month, it’s probably time to pack up all of the new-baby items that were once a part of your daily routine, such as the baby bouncer, baby swing, infant car seat, and the bassinette. If you think you might have more children in the future, hang onto those items to re-use them—just be sure to check the expiration dates on the items if and when you do have another baby. If you don’t want to pack away the items, you can donate them to friends and family or local women’s shelters.

By 10 months, your baby will be undergoing a lot of action on the teething front. A baby’s first teeth start to come in around 6 months old and will continue up through close to 3 years. By 10 months, the central incisors and lateral incisors may start coming in on the upper and lower gums.

The discomfort of teething usually comes a few days or even a week before the tooth actually erupts, so during that time, you can keep your baby comfortable with a weight-appropriate dose of an NSAID, like ibuprofen or Motrin, teething toys, or even a wet washcloth to soothe their gums.

Must Knows

This week, keep the following in mind as you successfully transition out of the newborn stage:

  • Have fun! 10 months is an incredibly fun age. Your baby will still be rocking a lot of that squishy baby chubbiness, is full of smiles and giggles, and loves a good snuggle. They may be on the move but not fully walking yet, so it’s a great time to soak in this sweet stage before your little one takes off—and never looks back!
  • Schedule a photo shoot: The 1-year-old portraits are a very important milestone that you will be glad you took the time to capture. Take a minute this month to book your baby’s 1-year photo shoot now so it’s one less thing you have to worry about next month. If you want any special props for the photo shoot, order them now so they will arrive in plenty of time.
  • Check in with yourself: At this stage in the game as a new mom, you may start to feel like you are coming out of the fog. Your clothes might fit differently, you may be getting more sleep, and you may finally start feeling like you’re ready to do more things outside of the baby bubble at home. Snuggles at home are great, but if you’re feeling the itch to do a little more for yourself this month, follow that instinct. Try a new workout, hire a babysitter for a few hours to work, or shop for some fresh looks to add to your wardrobe. You’ve accomplished amazing things these past 10 months, so there’s nothing wrong with taking a little time out this month to focus on yourself.
    Your 11-Month-Old Baby’s Development & Milestones
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    Article Sources
    • Dosman, C. F., Andrews, D., & Goulden, K. J. (2012). Evidence-based milestone ages as a framework for developmental surveillance. Paediatrics & Child Health,17(10), 561–568. DOI: 10.1093/pch/17.10.561.

    • American Academy of Pediatrics. (2018). Ages and stages: Baby. Healthy Children.org.

    • American Dental Association. (2018). Eruption charts.