I think it’s safe to say that as parents, it can be hard to stay on top of everything you need to know about your little one’s development—and when you need to know it. As your child gets older, there are milestones, skills, habits and many other important things to know as they grow. And 18-months-old is an important stage for your child.
In fact, Ontario has recognized the importance of the 18-month checkup and has funded an Enhanced 18-Month Well-Baby Visit, so you can have a detailed discussion about your little one with your doctor or health care provider.
Which is really great—but now you need to get organized. What should you ask? Where do you start?
The 18 Month Well-Baby Visit Planner
McMaster University has developed an awesome and entirely free and customizable resource that makes it much easier for you to stay organized at your baby’s 18-month checkup. It’s called the 18-Month Well-Baby Visit Planner and it covers off questions on your checklist like:
- Height, weight, nutrition and vaccinations
- Safety concerns about foods and toys that should be avoided at this age and what to do if your child is choking
- Your little one’s sleep habits
- Weaning from a pacifier or a bottle
- Toilet training
- Talking, words, attention, learning, and non-verbal communication
- Emotions, tantrums and social and emotional development
We love that the planner is quick and easy to use, with just 3 steps to follow. Basically, it can help make you feel less frazzled and disorganized and it breaks things down into nice, simple steps to follow. Simplicity is key when you’re a tired mom of a busy toddler. Here’s how it works:
Step 1: Decide what’s important to you and what questions you want to ask in 5 key areas of healthy child development: Physical Health, Safety, Parenting & Healthy Habits, Motor & Language Skills and Social & Emotional Development.
Step 2: Prioritize your questions in order of importance.
Step 3: Print, share or bookmark your plan so it’s ready to go during your appointment.
With everything on our phones these days, we love how you can pull this up at your doctor visit instead of trying to make sense of one of the notes you took on your phone at 2 in the morning.
Important 18 Month Milestones
Before you have a chat with your doctors, it’s good to know what some of the 18-month milestones are. Here are just a few to be aware of:
Use a variety of familiar gestures like waving, reaching up, etc.
Walk on their own
Say twenty or more words
Show affection towards people, pets or toys
Pick up and eat finger food
Look at you when you are talking or playing together
Follow simple directions, like “Put your toy on the bed.”
Point to show you something
You can find a full list of more milestones here.
So, now it’s time to get organized and get planning before your little one’s checkup! You can take a look at the planner here and let us know what you think.
This post was created in partnership with McMaster University and HealthHQ, but the opinions are our own.