Written By Mandy Treeby Chief Baby Sleep Consultant
Your 8-month-old has come a long way since they were a newborn. They’re growing big, learning new skills, and have already accomplished some major developmental milestones. It’s very exciting, but it also be a bit hard to keep up.
To help you chart your 8-month-old’s milestones, we’ve compiled expert advice and insights to answer your most common questions, including “What are 8-month-old milestones?” and “How much should an 8-month-old sleep?”
IN THIS ARTICLE:
- What are the Developmental Milestones for an 8-Month-Old?
- How to Support Your Baby's Development
- Sleep Schedule for an 8-Month-Old Baby
- What Causes an 8-Month Sleep Regression?
Speaking of sleep – sleep is fundamental to your baby’s development. It’s when they sleep that their bodies and minds grow and process. If sleep is a struggle and you don’t know where to start – take this free Sleep Assessment to get a personalized sleep plan for your baby!
What are the Developmental Milestones for an 8-Month-Old?
Your 8-month-old is undergoing some big developmental milestones . Here we break them down by category. One thing you’ll notice throughout, though, is that your baby is engaging the world in so many new ways. Also, keep in mind this is not a 8-month development checklist. Each baby develops at their own rate, so don’t worry if your baby is behind on anything mentioned here. And as always if you have any concerns you can check with your pediatrician.
8-Month-Old Growth and Physical Milestones:
You may notice two things about your baby’s feet right now: one, they’re pigeon-toed, and two, the bottoms of their feet appear flat. These are both very common and totally normal. That “flatness” a layer of fat to protect their feet as they begin taking their first tentative steps. It will recede in time, while the “pigeon toes” will correct themselves, too.
8-Month Communication Milestones:
One of the best 8-month-old developmental milestones is that babies begin to talk more. They’ll likely say simple words, such as “da-da” or “mama” – wow!
8-Month Motor Skill Milestones:
A fantastic 8-month milestone is that many babies are now getting better at sitting on their own.
Another tip: Put a favorite toy just out of reach and see if they go for it – literally!
Reaching and Almost Gripping:
As they become more mobile, your baby may start to lean forward to grab objects. You’ll also notice your 8-month-old is better at gripping objects – they’re growing so strong!
Rolling, and More:
By 8-months most babies can usually roll over both ways, scoot around the floor, and maybe even full-on crawl. Again, it’s alright if your baby isn’t quite there yet – they will be!
How To Help Your Baby Crawl:
A great way to help your baby learn to crawl is with tummy time: when you safely lay your baby on their belly. This helps strengthen their muscles and may encourage them to push themselves up and get crawling. You can also place some of their favorite objects just out of reach during tummy time and it may entice them to ‘crawl’ to get the item.
8-Month Old Senses and Motion:
A important 8-month-old milestone is that your baby’s hearing is improving – another great reason to talk to them more.
Tip: Describe what you’re doing when preparing their food or changing their diaper or even packing a bag – this engages them and will help improve their vocabulary down the road.
Your baby can see further now. You may also notice their eyes follow you as you move around – they adore you!
Improved Hand-Eye Coordination:
With their vision and motor skills improving, your baby’s hand-eye coordination will also improve. For example, they’ll be able to see a toy across the room, crawl to it, and pick it up – that’s incredible!
8-Month-Old Cognitive Milestones:
Your baby has been absorbing and learning for months. Now it’s starting to pay off – their “random” gurgles are starting to sound more like actual syllables. These syllables will soon become actual words. These words often include “ma,” which will become “mama” (!), “da,” which is “dada” (!), and “ba,” bye-bye.
An 8-month old baby is also adept at waving goodbye, shaking their head “no,” and other simple non-verbal gestures.
Another 8-month milestone to look for is your baby know what things are. For example, if you mention their favorite toy, your baby may look for it. Same with an older sibling or family pet - and, best of all, themselves! Yes, 8-month-old babies know their own names!
Babies this age are also understanding object permanence – the concept that things exist even when out of sight. This is the fundamental reason behind the 8-month sleep regression because your baby wakes up, sees you’re not there but understands that you still exist and therefore starts to miss you. So where they may have rolled over and gone back to sleep in the past, now they cry out looking for you and sleep is somewhat disrupted.
How to Support Your Baby's Development
As a parent you want to support your baby’s development every step of the way, but how do you aide your 8-month-old’s development? Here are some tips to support your 8-month old’s development:
Talk, Talk, Talk:
Talking and reading to your baby introduces them to new sounds, syllables, and words that build their vocabulary. Tip: Encourage your baby to mimic simple words you read in a book.
A classic for a reason, peek-a-boo also helps grow your baby’s understanding that you will return, even if they can’t see you.
With your baby’s motor skills improving, let them practice by using a spoon at mealtime. This gets them used to using utensils – a key step in feeding themselves – and improves your 8-month-old’s hand-eye coordination and grip strength.
Using non-traditional toys like plastic containers and wooden spoons encourages imagination and free play.
Playing on the ground with your baby brings you to their level and increases connection. One great game: rolling a ball back and forth. This is fun and helps strengthen the muscles needed for crawling. Who knows? They may even start crawling while you’re playing!
Sleep is essential to your baby’s growth. It sets them up for success now and later in life. To ensure your baby gets the rest they need, consider downloading the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™. It’s so effective that many users see results in less than a week, and it teaches your baby a life-long habit that will serve them for years to come.
Can 8-month-Olds Roll Over?
Yes, by 8-months most babies can roll over both back-to-belly and belly-to-back.
Should My 8-month-Old Get a Check-Up?
Traditionally the next check-up is next month, when your baby is 9-months.
A Guide to Your 8-Month-Old’s Sleep:
Most 8-month-olds are sleeping well at night, but you probably still have a lot of questions, including “What is an 8-month-old’s sleep schedule?” and “How many naps should an 8-month-old take?” We answer those here, and so many more.
Sleep Schedule for an 8-Month-Old Baby:
When reading this schedule, keep in mind that every baby is special and has their own sleep cycle. Therefore, focus more on your baby’s wake windows – how long they’re awake between sleeps - and sleepy cues than the actual clock. The times here are just examples, but it is important to keep in mind that it is around this time your baby will transition from 3 to 2 naps, dropping that afternoon catnap. To best manage this nap transition, consider bringing bedtime earlier for a few days until your baby gets used to the change.
Sample 8-Month-Old Sleep Schedule
Babies are naturally early risers
Awake: 2 hrs – 2.5 hrs
Nap: 1 hr. 30 mins.
Awake: 2 hrs. 30min.
Nap: 1.5 hr.
Awake: 4 hrs.
How Much Sleep Should An 8-Month-Old Get?
On average an 8-month-olds will sleep about 14-hours over a 24-hour period.
How Much Should an 8-Month-Old Sleep During the Day?
Most 8-month-olds take 2 naps totaling about 2-3 hours total.
What is an 8-month-old’s Wake Window?
About 2.25-3 hours between sleeps is a healthy wake window for an 8-month-old.
How Much Should an 8-Month-Old Sleep at Night?
Typically, an 8-month old sleeps about 11-12 hours at night. Some will still wake occasionally for night feedings, you can always check with your pediatrician if it is ok to night wean.
Do 8-Month-Olds Have Sleep Regressions?
Some 8-month-olds do experience a sleep regression, yes, but for some this regression happens at 7 months, for others it’s closer to 9 months.
What Causes an 8-Month Sleep Regression?
Sleep regressions most typically always coincide with developmental milestones, and there are some major 8-month developmental milestones, including increased motor skills, mobility, and language. This is all exciting to them – far more exciting than sleep – and can lead to the 8-month sleep regression .
The main reasons behind this regression:
Teething in 8-Month-Olds: Your 8-month-old may be teething, which can be painful and wake them at night. You can soothe them with gum massages or OTC medicine if you see fit.
Separation Anxiety in 8-Month-Olds: Because they’re learning object permanence, some babies may experience separation anxiety that leads to an 8-month sleep regression. This is totally normal, and a very positive sign: it means your baby understands things exist when they can’t see them – a huge baby milestone.
Overtiredness: Since 8-month-olds are nap transitioning, you may find your baby is overtired at night. This can make it hard for them to sleep. If you see signs of overtiredness in your baby, including fussiness or difficulty falling asleep, consider moving their bedtime up or adjusting their nap schedule.
And for more assistance on getting your baby’s sleep on track, download the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™ . Its 1-click sleep tracking tool makes monitoring your baby’s sleep a breeze – plus this easy-to-use app can customize sleep coaching methods that work for you and your unique baby.
What is normal development for an 8-month-old?
By 8-months most babies have improved motor skills, can roll over both ways, can hear more, and are starting to sound out words a bit more.
What activities should an 8-month-old be doing?
An 8-month-old can engage and play more than ever. Some great activities for 8-month-olds are singing and dancing, trying to stand with a parent or caretakers help, crawling on the ground, peekaboo, and reading.
The key is that you’re there with them – by playing and talking, you’re teaching them about the world – plus, you’re a reminder that they’re safe and loved.
What Motor Skills Do 8-Month-Olds Have?
8-month-olds can grip and move objects, swing their arms, and hold their up.
How Long Should an 8-month-Old Play by Themselves?
Playing together is great for building your baby’s vocabulary and other skills, but about 30 minutes of safe alone time a day can help grow their imagination, focus, and attention span, all while giving you a moment to yourself, too!
“Your Baby's Hearing and Communicative Development Checklist,” National
Institutes of Health
“Intuitive statistics by 8-month-old infants,” The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences .
“Infant Sleep and Its Relation with Cognition and Growth: A Narrative Review,” Nature and Science of Sleep.
How We Wrote This Article
The information in this article is based on the expert advice found in trusted medical and government sources, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. You can find a full list of sources used for this article below. The content on this page should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult medical professionals for full diagnosis and treatment.