When Do Babies Start Laughing And Really Laugh?

Last Updated on July 29, 2021

When Do Babies Start Laughing – Most new parents share several major concerns: why is the baby awake, what is the best way to prevent crying, and when to call a pediatrician? These concerns are usually temporary, but once they have been resolved, new ones prevail. Just as a child sleeps peacefully from time to time, parents discover the world of developmental stages and begin to wonder: Should my child start smiling now? When do babies start laughing at all?

When Do Babies Start Laughing

When Do Babies Start Laughing

The first thing parents need to understand is that every baby is different. Although developmental milestones exist as a general guide, they arrive according to a child’s own pace.

Babies usually start laughing “between 2-4 months” says Nina Pegram, pediatric nurse practitioner and lactation consultant with SimpliFed.  Before this, an intentional smile would most likely have occurred between 1-2 months; sometimes in their sleep, she adds. But the absence of laughter, at this particular age, does not mean that there is something wrong with a child. Some babies simply tend to be sterner.

What Does it Mean When Babies Laugh?

“The first few smiles are normally caused by an involuntary reflex,” says Carolyn, a registered nurse and Parenting Consultant at Teach Work Mom. During the REM phase of sleep, your baby may smile, jerk, laugh, or cry.  Laughing or smiling at this early stage is not an emotional response, but a natural way of practicing expressive skills. The baby will not begin to smile or giggle with intention until around the second month. “Smiling and laughing shows that your baby’s brain and vision has matured to the point that they can recognize your face and display emotions voluntarily.”

RELATED: When Do Babies Start Crawling And Really Crawl?

Should Parents be Concerned About Their Child’s Development?

“Some babies are more serious than others so it is ok if your baby is not laughing by 3-4 months old” adds Carolyn. There isn’t any cause for concern until about 6 months. At this point if your baby is not making eye contact, smiling or laughing at all, you might want to discuss it with your pediatrician. As parent you can encourage you baby to laugh by talking to them frequently,  singing or making animated faces.

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