It's been a long road to get here. Newborns have the world at their feet, but their first 12 weeks are really all about consolidating the development of the past nine months. Although they will change physically in these few months, your newborn's big firsts are in the later months to come. Still, it's an exciting time to be a parent or caregiver as you watch your newborn grow from a squealing, flailing infant into a more curious, interactive and filled out baby.

Weight gain

The first few months of your baby’s life are characterised by weight gain. Within three months your baby will have almost doubled their birth weight.

Closing of the fontanelle

The soft spots on your baby’s head will be closing over. Their skull is growing strong as these formerly soft and separate plates fuse together and firm up, giving your baby’s brain improved protection.

Increased stretches of sleep

As your baby’s stomach grows, their feeding frequency diminishes and by the time they are 12 weeks old they are likely to be able to sleep for stretches of five to six hours – approaching a normal night’s sleep for you!

Increased strength and movement

In the early days of your baby’s life they couldn’t move anything other than their legs and arms without your help. A few months down the track you might start to see your baby lifting their head up while lying down or rolling it from side to side.

Improved communication

While you’ve been cooing, talking and singing to your baby these past 12 weeks, they’ve been developing language. Although they can’t yet communicate back to you, your baby will be able to understand tone, sense body language and identify the sound of your voice. Your baby will smile when they see you and may even laugh when surprised or delighted.

Grabbing and playing with things

At three months old your baby will be able to grab and hold things placed into their hands and will often put them straight into their mouths. Warn family and friends when they’re reaching out with their hands!