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Communication and Your 1- to 3-Month-Old

This is an exciting time for parents — babies this age make real progress toward communicating. They'll recognize Mommy and Daddy, laugh, squeal, and smile spontaneously.

Your baby's personality begins to become evident as he or she becomes a more active and alert member of your family.

How Babies Communicate

Crying continues to be a baby's primary means of communication for many months. Aside from letting parents know that they need something, they might cry when overwhelmed by all of the sights and sounds of the world. Sometimes babies may cry for no apparent reason. Try not to get too upset if your baby cries and you aren't able to console him or her.

Your baby will respond to the sound of your voice by becoming quiet, smiling, or getting excited and moving his or her arms and legs.

Babies this age begin smiling regularly at mom and dad but probably won't smile and act friendly with strangers, though they may warm up to them with coos and body talk.

Babies now discover their ability to vocalize: Soon you'll have a cooing and gurgling machine! Some babies begin to make some vowel sounds, like 'ah-ah' or 'ooh-ooh,' at about 2 months. Your baby will 'talk'to you with a variety of sounds; your baby will also smile at you and wait for your response, and respond to your smiles with his or her own. Your baby's arms and legs will move, and his or her hands will open up. Your baby may even mimic your facial expressions.

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