Most little ones say their first words around their first birthday. But what is the first word they say?

Odds are your child’s first word will be something like “dada” or “mama”—and there’s a scientific reason why!

A study from the University of Pennsylvania found that babies are drawn to words that have repeating sounds. According to the study, brain activity in babies increased when they heard repetitious words like “mama” as opposed to words without repeating sounds. That might be why cultures all around the world use words like “mama” and “papa”!

We asked parents to share their child’s first word with us. As expected, “mama” and “dada” were common first words but we also got some unexpected answers. Read them below!

What was your child’s first word? Tell us in the comments!

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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider.