Parenting in KFL&A
Adult and baby laying on the floor.
Your baby is now five months old! This month we’ll be talking about your baby’s vision, when to introduce solid foods, sleep, and parent “me-time”.
Appointment alert!
Now is the time to book the appointments your baby needs when they are six months old:
  • An eye exam
  • A check up with your primary care provider
  • Immunizations
Baby on tummy with open eyes.
Your baby's vision
As many as 1 in 4 children has a vision problem that may impact how they learn later. Regular eye exams can identify conditions that may be treated if found early. An eye exam with an eye doctor (optometrist) is free for children and youth up to 19 years of age with a valid OHIP card.

By six months of age, your baby should:
  • move their eyes to look for the source of sounds,
  • swipe at or reach for objects, and
  • smile and laugh when they see you smile and laugh.

Mention to your eye doctor if you notice any of the following:
  • Swelling, bumps or sores on or around the eyelids
  • Drooping eyelids
  • Does not make eye contact or follow an object with the eyes
  • Haziness or whitish appearance inside the pupil
  • Frequent wiggling, drifting, or jerky eye movements
  • Eyes that turn in, cross, or drift
  • Often tearing when not crying

If you have concerns about your child's vision, don't wait. The sooner a problem is identified the sooner your child can have the help they need.
Baby sitting in high chair sucking on fingers.
Introducing solids at 6 months
As your baby nears 6 months old, you might be wondering if you should start offering solid food. Introducing solid foods at 6 months old is recommended by Health Canada, the Canadian Paediatric Society, Dietitians of Canada, and the Breastfeeding Committee for Canada.

Your baby is ready for solid foods when they:
  • Have good head control
  • Can sit up and lean forward
  • Can pick up food and try to put it in their mouth
  • Can turn their head away when they are full

Sign up now to take a free class with a registered dietitian on Introducing Solid Foods to Your Baby.
Sign up now
Adult holding crying baby in dark room.
As your baby gets older, you may notice changes in their sleep pattern. They may:
  • normally sleep 12 to 16 hours during a 24-hour period, including naps, and
  • transition from many short naps to fewer, longer naps.
It’s normal for your baby to continue waking several times during the night (sorry!). Babies who previously slept for longer stretches at night may start to wake more often again when they are:
  • Teething
  • Not feeling well
  • Having a growth spurt
  • Learning new skills such as language skills, rolling over, sitting up or walking
If your baby wakes up and you don’t think they need to eat or have their diaper changed, you can try letting them self-soothe and return to sleep. Babies may try to soothe themselves by:
  • sucking on their fingers or hand,
  • changing position, or
  • paying attention to your voice.
If your baby does not go back to sleep and is upset, it is important to respond to them.
Adult sitting on couch reading a book and holding a mug.
Parenting is hard! It’s okay to take care of yourself.
“Me time” is hard to find when you have small children. Taking care of yourself often means making small changes “just for you” like eating a healthy breakfast, taking a shower, or going for a walk. It’s hard to make these things happen. It might mean that the dishes don’t get done, or the toys don’t get put away. It’s okay to let those things go. Crumbs and overflowing laundry are part of having a young family.

You matter too.
Screen shot of YouTube video. Hi! Tara (Momma to three kids) Photos
Parenting tips
Hear tips from other KFL&A parents on our Parenting YouTube Channel.
Parent videos
Have a great month! We’ll connect with you next month when your baby is 6 months old!
KFL&A Public Health, 221 Portsmouth Avenue, Kingston, Ontario K7M 1V5