Growth milestones for children - 18 months; Normal childhood growth milestones - 18 months; Childhood growth milestones - 18 months; Well child - 18 months
The typical 18-month-old child will demonstrate certain physical and mental skills. These skills are called developmental milestones.
All children develop a little differently. If you are concerned about your child's development, talk to your child's health care provider.
PHYSICAL AND MOTOR SKILL MARKERS
The typical 18-month-old:
- Has a closed soft spot on the front of the head
- Is growing at a slower rate and has less of an appetite compared to the months before
- Is able to control the muscles used to urinate and have bowel movements, but may not be ready to use the toilet
- Runs stiffly and falls often
- Is able to get onto small chairs without help
- Walks up stairs while holding on with one hand
- Can build a tower of 2 to 4 blocks
- Can use a spoon and cup with help to feed self
- Imitates scribbling
- Can turn 2 or 3 pages of a book at a time
SENSORY AND COGNITIVE MARKERS
The typical 18-month-old:
- Shows affection
- Has separation anxiety
- Listens to a story or looks at pictures
- Can say 10 or more words when asked
- Kisses parents with lips puckered
- Identifies one or more parts of the body
- Understands and is able to point to and identify common objects
- Often imitates
- Is able to take off some clothing items, such as gloves, hats, and socks
- Begins to feel a sense of ownership, identifying people and objects by saying "my"
- Encourage and provide the necessary space for physical activity.
- Provide safe copies of adult tools and equipment for the child to play with.
- Allow the child to help around the house and participate in the family's daily responsibilities.
- Encourage play that involves building and creativity.
- Read to the child.
- Encourage play dates with children of the same age.
- Avoid television and other screen time before age 2.
- Play simple games together, such as puzzles and shape sorting.
- Use a transitional object to help with separation anxiety.
American Academy of Pediatrics website. Recommendations for preventive pediatric health care. www.aap.org/en-us/Documents/periodicity_schedule.pdf. Updated February 2017. Accessed November 14, 2018.
Feigelman S. The second year. In: Kliegman RM, Stanton BF, St. Geme JW, Schor NF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 20th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 11.
Marcdante KJ, Kliegman RM. Normal development. In: Marcdante KJ, Kliegman RM, eds. Nelson Essentials of Pediatrics. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 7.