Increased hearing, copying facial expressions and immunisations

Turns her head towards a sound

Your baby's hearing fully developed around the four-week mark but now your bub may now turn their head in the direction of a sudden sound. This milestone can occur between two and four months, but it shows her brain is developing properly. To support this skill, hold a musical toy in front of your baby and move it from side to side. Your bub will follow the toy with her eyes and later her head.

Also try calling her name while you are out of her sight. After a few moments, move into your baby's line of sight so she can see that you made the noise.

Copying facial expressions

Research has shown babies start copying facial expressions very early in life. Stick your tongue out and see if she does the same. And keep that camera ready because during the second month, your baby will smile, as well as coo and babble.

Try talking to your baby and pause for a response, they will soon start joining in on the conversation.

A baby's first immunisation is soon after birth and their next appointment is at 8 weeks (but can be taken at six weeks). (Image: Getty Images)

Immunisations

A baby's first immunisation is soon after birth and their next appointment is at 8 weeks (but can be taken at six weeks). This is a combined vaccine covering six diseases – diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis), Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), hepatitis B and polio – as well as a vaccine against pneumococcal and another for rotavirus, a gastroenteritis bug. These vaccines are available free at your doctor's surgery or at clinics run by councils and local health authorities.

There's no law that states you must have your child immunised according to the government's schedule – it's your choice. But being up to date with your child's immunisation schedule is a condition for receiving the Child Care Rebate and, if you're eligible, the Family Tax Payment Part A and Child Care Benefit. If you have chosen not to vaccinate your child, you will only be eligible for government benefits if you lodge a conscientious objector form with the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register.

Why immunise your child?

  • It's your child's best protection against serious illnesses.
  • Science is on the side of immunisation – studies that suggested a link between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism have been thoroughly discredited.
  • You're contributing to a healthier community and helping to protect vulnerable members of society, such as the elderly and other children, especially those who are sick and cannot have vaccines.

For more information on this government initiative specific to your state or territory, head to www.immunise.health.gov.au.