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Your baby’s stages of grasping objects

The ultimate aim of reaching out to something is to grab hold of it. So grasping is often the next motor development milestone your baby will be reaching once he is more confident in his reaching accuracy and skills. And once they fully mastered grasping (around 9-10 months), you can expect them to experiment with throwing - watch out, mama!

Here is a breakdown of the different stages of grasping and when you can expect to see them or encourage them:


4 months: your baby will be able to hold an object you give him and gently wrap one or two of his fingers around it (usually his little and ring finger). This is called the ulnar palmer grasp. He won't use his thumb yet, and he won't have a firm grip or control, so it may roll away from him, or she might hit himself with it. 



5 Months: By now, your baby has a little more control of the object and tries to center it in the palm of his hand by wrapping more fingers (still not his thumb) around it. This is called the palmer grasp.



6 Months: Your baby will finally start using his thumb when holding an object (the ), although it will still be more of a support than part of his actual grip. 


7 Months: Around seven months, your baby will try to pick up objects using his hand like a rake, aptly named the raking grasp. Your baby's fingers will be spread out as he reaches for an object but will close around the object once he touches it. This will also help strengthen the muscles in his hands and further finetune his hand-eye coordination.


8 Months: As a precursor to the pincer grasp (using your forefinger and thumb), your baby will first develop his radial digital grasp. It still lacks the refinement to pick up small objects, but your baby will now try to pick up an object using the pads of his thumb and other fingers.



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