Drag to read about a different month.


    He’s more curious, yet more cautious.

    A five month old infant girl sitting on the bed staring at the camera

    Your baby’s world right now

    Definitely growing strong. Possibly growing wary.
    By the end of this month, your 5-month-old will probably be able to sit up with some support, and be able to pass toys from one hand to another. And, depending on how often your friends and family visit you, he might start displaying a wariness of strangers.

    At this stage, most babies have developed an awareness and recognition of key people around them. But they also might have a mistrust and fear of those who are not familiar. Although this fear goes away with time and is nothing to worry about, it usually helps to introduce your baby to new people a little more slowly during this time.
    Adult hand holding a milk bottle near a sleeping five month old infant

    Your baby’s nutrition

    He may not have great balance, but his diet should.
    Proper nutrition helps your 5-month-old baby grow strong. Whether you choose to breastfeed or use baby formula, your baby needs protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals in order to develop strong bones, healthy muscles, and a strong body.

    Here are some important nutrients your baby needs for optimal growth:

    • Vitamin C helps form collagen, a protein that gives structure to bones, cartilage, muscle, blood vessels, and other connective tissue. It helps maintain capillaries, bones, and teeth. In addition, vitamin C is essential for healing wounds and helping the body resist infection, and it aids in iron absorption.
    • Calcium plays an important role in bone and tooth development, blood clotting, and maintenance of healthy nerves and muscles.
    • Iron is necessary for proper growth and formation of healthy blood cells. Iron is part of hemoglobin, a protein that is involved in carrying and storing oxygen.
    • Proteins help develop, maintain, and repair new tissues throughout the body, including muscles.

    Breastfeeding is the best way to help your baby grow. If you choose to formula feed, Similac® Advance® provides complete nutrition to support your baby's growing body.
    A five month old infant staring curiously at a toy while lying face down

    Your baby’s development

    Muscles and brain cells are firing on all cylinders.
    Encourage your baby to raise his head and push up on his arms to watch what is happening in the world around him.

    Hold your baby upright under the arms. Slowly lower him until his feet touch the table, bed, or your lap to help him get prepared for what standing will feel like.

    Help him sit up alone. You can start by propping him up in the corner of a couch or chair, which can prevent him from falling over.

    Try to get your baby to follow faces or bright objects with his eyes.

    Help your baby pick up small toys, such as 1-inch blocks. (Keep small objects that can cause choking out of your baby's reach and mouth.)

    Sleep patterns and tips at 5 months.
    • Your baby could start waking up more during the night to feed, and might not yet sleep longer than five to six hours at a time. He might still sleep about 12 to 15 hours total every day.
    • He might start sitting up and waking himself in the process. If possible, let him try to get back to sleep on his own instead of immediately trying to provide comfort.
    • You and your partner should decide beforehand if you are comfortable with this type of baby sleep "training." Many parents call it the "cry it out" method.

    Have questions about SIDS?
    Learn about SIDS at the American Academy of Pediatrics.
    A five month old infant girl with a bib sucking on thumb

    Things to think about now

    Teething, already? Maybe.
    Your baby may already start teething by now, so look for signs: drooling, face rash, or crankiness. Also, eczema and food allergies may develop around now, possibly initiated by introducing solids. And if your baby seems interested in drinking from a cup, go ahead and try it.
    A father feeding his six months old infant with milk from a bottle

    Next month’s developments

    Purees and peek-a-boo are your friends.
    Separation anxiety may reveal itself this month, as will the opportunity to introduce more interesting food options.