Fathers need to pay close attention to their baby’s growth and development. It is important to track milestones and discuss any concerns you may have with your baby’s doctors.

Daddy’s Digest has put together a list of things to look out for at the 18-month mark. Remember to always provide a safe, loving environment. It’s important to be consistent and predictable to enable your child to grow happy and healthy.

There are other developments and activities you can do with your child that are not mentioned here. This is a father-focused list and accounts for time spent and work and active involvement of the mother and other family members.


Around 18 months, your baby will need 1-2 naps per day ranging from 1-2 hours per nap. They should go down for the night between 7pm and 8pm and sleep for 10-12 hours per night. Total daily hours of sleep should be between 12-14 hours.

Developmental Milestones

  • May have temper tantrums and may be afraid of strangers
  • Shows affection to familiar people and may cling to caregivers in unfamiliar situations
  • Says several single words
  • Says “no” and shakes head
  • Points to show someone what they want
  • Knows what ordinary things are. E.g. Telephone, Chair, Table
  • Understands 1-step instructions. E.g. Sit down
  • Walks alone but with a parent nearby
  • Drinks from a cup and eats with a spoon

How You Can Help with Development

  • Praise more than you show being upset
  • Encourage empathy
  • Talk, Read and Sing to your child
  • Ask simple questions
  • Play with safe toys that teach ‘cause and effect’, problem solving and pretend play. Blow bubbles and let your child pop them

Developmental Concerns

  • Can’t walk
  • Doesn’t point to show things to others
  • Doesn’t copy others
  • Doesn’t know what familiar things are for
  • Loses skills they once had
  • Doesn’t gain new words. Should know at least 6 words
  • Doesn’t notice or mind if a caregiver leaves or returns

Remember that all children are different and develop at varying paces. If you do notice any of the listed concerns, we recommend erring on the side of caution and talking to your child’s doctor.

This information has been curated from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the CDC. Always consult with a qualified medical professional or childcare expert when taking important decisions regarding your child and their health.

Impress your partner with key facts, take better co-parenting decisions and be 'in the know'. Visit our Partners & Parents resource center for more.

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