When do newborns become infants: Infant development: Birth to 3 months
Infant development: Birth to 3 months
Infant development: Birth to 3 months
Infant development begins at birth. Consider major infant development milestones from birth to 3 months — and know what to do when something’s not right.
By Mayo Clinic Staff
A lot happens during your baby’s first three months. Most babies reach certain milestones at similar ages, but infant development isn’t an exact science. Expect your baby to grow and develop at his or her own pace. As you get to know your baby, consider these general infant development milestones.
What to expect
At first, caring for your baby might feel like an endless cycle of feeding, diapering and soothing. But soon, signs of your baby’s growth and development will emerge.
- Motor skills. Your newborn’s head will be wobbly at first and movements will be jerky. But soon your baby will be able to lift his or her head and chest while lying on his or her stomach, as well as stretch and kick his or her legs in that position. If you offer a toy, your baby might grasp it and hold on tight for a few moments.
- Hearing. Your infant will be sensitive to noise levels. Expect your baby to begin responding to the sound of your voice by smiling and gurgling back at you. He or she will also begin turning toward the direction of sounds.
- Vision. Your baby will probably focus on your face, particularly your eyes, during feedings. At age 1 month, your baby will prefer to look at bold patterns in sharply contrasting colors or black-and-white. By around age 2 months, your baby’s eyes will become more coordinated, allowing for tracking an object. Soon your baby will begin to recognize familiar objects and people at a distance.
- Communication. By age 2 months, your baby might coo and repeat vowel sounds when you talk or gently play together.
Promoting your baby’s development
Your relationship with your child is the foundation of his or her healthy development. Trust your ability to meet your baby’s needs. You can:
- Hold your baby. This can help your newborn feel safe, secure and loved. Let your baby grasp your little finger and touch your face.
- Speak freely. Simple conversation lays the groundwork for language development. Sing. Read a story out loud. Ask questions and respond to your baby’s coos and gurgles. Describe what you see, hear and smell around the house and when you’re out and about. Remember that your tone of voice communicates ideas and emotions as well.
- Change positions. Hold your baby facing outward. With close supervision, place your baby on his or her tummy to play. Hold a colorful toy or make an interesting noise to encourage your baby to pick up his or her head. Many newborns get fussy or frustrated on their tummies, so keep these sessions brief at first — just a few minutes at a time. If drowsiness sets in, place your baby on his or her back to sleep.
- Respond quickly to tears. For most newborns, crying spells peak about six weeks after birth and then gradually decline. Whether your baby needs a diaper change, feeding session or simply warm contact, respond quickly. Don’t worry about spoiling your baby with too much attention. Your care will help build a strong bond with your baby — and the confidence he or she will need to settle down without your help one day.
When something’s not right
Your baby might reach some developmental milestones ahead of schedule and lag behind on others. This is normal. It’s a good idea to be aware of the warning signs of developmental delay, however. Consult your baby’s doctor if you’re concerned about your baby’s development or you notice any of these red flags by age 3 months:
- Hasn’t shown any improvement in head control
- Doesn’t seem to respond to loud sounds
- Doesn’t smile at people or the sound of your voice
- Doesn’t follow moving objects with his or her eyes
- Doesn’t notice his or her hands
- Doesn’t grasp and hold objects
Remember that every baby is unique — but your instincts are important, too. The earlier a problem is detected, the earlier it can be treated.
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June 25, 2020
- Assure baby’s physical development. Pathways.org. https://pathways.org/growth-development/0-3-months. Accessed May 23, 2017.
- Shelov SP, et al. The first month. In: Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5. 6th ed. New York, N.Y.: Bantam Books; 2014.
- Birth to 3 months: Your baby’s development. Zero to Three. https://www. zerotothree.org/resources/80-birth-to-3-months-your-baby-s-development. Accessed May 22, 2017.
- Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS): Other FAQs. National Institute of Child Health & Human Development. http://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/sids/conditioninfo/pages/faqs.aspx. Accessed May 23, 2017.
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CDC’s Parent Information (Teens 12— 19)
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CDC’s Healthy Weight Information.
Tips for parents – Ideas to help children maintain a healthy weight.
CDC’s Youth Physical Activity Guidelines
This site has information on how to help children be active and play.
CDC’s Pregnancy Prevention for Teens.
Tips and information especially for teens and designed with input from teens.
CDC’s BAM! Body and Mind
CDC’s BAM! Body and Mind is a website designed for kids 9 through 13 years of age, to give them the information they need to make healthy lifestyle choices. The site focuses on topics that kids told us are important to them—such as stress and physical fitness—using kid-friendly lingo, games, quizzes, and other interactive features.
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Learn about the physical and mental health of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth
American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatryexternal icon
The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry has many fact sheets for parents on child and adolescent health and development.
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The U.S. Department of Agriculture provides information on health and nutrition for teens.
AAP’s Healthy Children website provides information on feeding, nutrition, and fitness for all developmental stages from infancy to young adulthood.
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Quality, research-based information to families at the time it can be most useful.
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It’s OK to Not Love the Newborn Phase
Here’s the truth: when a baby finally makes they grand entrance after the long nine-month wait, they will rock their parent’s world regardless of whether they are first time or experienced parents.
Life becomes all about this little human and making sure they are happy and healthy. Starting on day one of a baby’s existence, they begin the journey of maturing and growing into an adult human, and as parents, we are along for the ride.
There are many different phases within their first year of life that will be the building blocks to getting them to the next stage of childhood. While these phases are rooted in developmental steps affecting the baby’s growth, each involves the parents’ nurturing and support. The first phase you will experience as a parent, which can sometimes be the most challenging, is the newborn phase.
Before the arrival of my daughter, I spoke with many of my friends who were already moms and did research on what to expect in the first year of my baby’s life. As someone who doesn’t love surprises, I wanted to have a basic understanding of what was to come. I familiarized myself with phases like the four-month sleep regression and knew developmental steps like teething, rolling over, and nap eliminations could be challenging. However, when doing my research and chatting with other moms, no one mentioned anything about the first couple of months other than the overwhelming love and exhaustion. Both ended up being true in my case, but there was also much more.
Babies are considered newborns from birth until about two months of age. At this age, they are not very active or alert, so they might require less mental and physical energy than, say, a five-month-old. But make no mistake, this newborn phase is no less challenging and, quite honestly, I was not in love with this phase as many others are. As a mom who would do anything for her baby, it was hard for me to admit this at first. However, after confiding in close friends, they assured me that what I was feeling was normal, especially as a first-time mom.
Source: Sergiu Vălenaș | Unsplash
When I first came home from the hospital, I was exhausted, still in pain from giving birth, and nervous about taking care of this tiny human. Turns out, no matter how much research and reading I did in advance to prepare, I was 100% not ready for motherhood. Being so little and new, most babies are eating around the clock as their bodies grow. This, in turn, results in a severe lack of sleep, which at times can feel torturous. (There’s a reason why sleep deprivation is a method of torture!)
A newborn is also too little to communicate in any other way than crying, so I would often become sad because I felt I couldn’t address my daughter’s needs. At one point, the days started blending together, and I felt totally isolated from the world. Quite possibly the most difficult part of this phase didn’t even involve my baby directly, but it was the postpartum hormonal fluctuation happening inside my body that sent me on an emotional rollercoaster.
Eat, change, sleep, repeat. Survive. The newborn phase is all about survival. It might sound dramatic, but it’s literally what all my mom friends told me when I was asking questions or venting: just get through this phase.
They were right.
Once we hit three months, I felt myself relax and soften. I had made it. Even as we faced new developmental challenges, I felt my confidence as a mother grow. Comparatively, these new challenges felt easier than those I experienced in the first two months. Sleep became more consistent, time between feedings lengthened, and I started to feel like myself again.
If you are reading this now and are in the trenches of weeks three or four, I can confidently say from the other side – it does, in fact, get better and easier. I am so in love with this little human, and at nearly five months old, she’s already my best friend. We have so much fun together each day, and she is learning and growing before my eyes. Even as we move through sleep training and teething, I have the confidence and skill to manage and overcome these phases together with my baby.
Source: Aditya Romansa | Unsplash
I imagine that with any subsequent children (hopefully!), the newborn phase won’t be as difficult because it won’t be my first experience. Certainly, some of my feelings can be credited to being a first-time mom. However, I do believe there are factors of this newborn phase that will always be difficult regardless of if it’s your first baby or your fourth. After all, every baby is different.
The first two months are all about transitioning into motherhood and getting to know your baby while surviving the sleepless nights and around-the-clock feedings. It’s about sacrificing part of yourself to your child. I feel beyond blessed and thankful to have given birth to a beautiful, healthy, thriving baby girl. I just want moms to know it’s OK to have these feelings – of discouragement, of exhaustion, of flat out waiting for this phase to be over.
This is normal. And you’re still a great mom.
I encourage you to voice what you might be feeling or thinking to your partner, mom, friends, or family so that they can help and support you through the transition. There is no truer statement to describe raising a child than “it takes a village,” so never be afraid to ask for help.
It gets better. I promise.
9 Ways to Pass the Time During the Long Newborn Days
Learning, Play, and Your 1- to 3-Month-Old (for Parents)
What Is My Baby Learning?
After learning to recognize your voice, your face, and your touch, and to associate them with comfort, your baby will start responding even more to you during these months — and will even give you a smile!
Babies this age spend more time awake and become more curious about their surroundings. They are getting physically stronger and better able to coordinate movements. Encourage the learning process by talking to your little one, responding to his or her vocal expressions, and providing colorful age-appropriate toys.
You’ll now see your baby’s personality emerge. In the first month or two of life, newborns depend on others to initiate interaction. But by the end of the third month your baby will engage you with facial expressions, vocalizations, and gestures.
Your baby will carefully watch your facial expressions and listen to your voice, responding to you with coos and gurgles. At around 2 months, your baby will respond to your smile with a smile. Between 3 and 4 months, most infants can squeal with delight and laugh out loud.
Babies will start to open and shut their fists, opening up new possibilities. They can hold a rattle placed in their hands. They’ll soon discover that they’re the one that made the rattle make noise!
Babies also start to explore their surroundings with their hands, reaching out, swatting at, and grasping for a favorite toy. They’ll also begin to notice their hands and feet, and they’ll become a source of amusement. They enjoy staring at their hands, playing with their fingers, and bringing their hands or a toy to their mouth.
How Can I Help My Baby Learn?
Respond to coos and gurgling with sounds of your own. Encourage your baby to keep using his or her voice. In this way, your little one learns about language and back-and-forth conversation.
Provide colorful toys of different textures, shapes, and sizes for your baby to hold and explore. This is a good age to introduce an infant gym with interesting objects that dangle for your baby to swat at. Or hold a toy just out of reach for your baby to reach for, swat, and grab hold of. But don’t string up toys on cribs or other baby equipment — your baby could get tangled in them.
Watch for signs — fussing, squirming, or crying — that your little one might be ready for a break.
Some Other Ideas
Other ideas for encouraging your baby to learn and play:
- Gently clap your baby’s hands together or stretch arms (crossed, out wide, or overhead).
- Gently move your baby’s legs as if pedaling a bicycle.
- Use a favorite toy for your baby to focus on and follow, or shake a rattle for your infant to find.
- While awake, let your baby spend some time on his or her tummy to help strengthen the neck and shoulders. Always supervise your infant during “tummy time” and be ready to help if he or she gets tired or frustrated in this position. Never put a baby to sleep on his or her stomach. Infants should sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
- Make different facial expressions for your baby to imitate.
- Talk to your baby and let your baby respond.
- Read to your baby.
Keep in mind that babies develop at different rates, and there is a wide range of normal development. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns about how your baby sees and hears, or if you have any questions or concerns about your baby’s development.
Developmental milestone: Separation and independence
Separation and independence
As a newborn, your baby has no sense of herself as an individual: She thinks that the two of you are one and doesn’t realize that the tiny hands and feet waving before her are her own.
Over time, though, as your growing baby develops physically and mentally, she’ll gradually figure out that she’s her own little person, with her own body, thoughts, and feelings. Of course, she’ll also want to do things her own way.
When it develops
Your baby’s sense of individuality will take years to develop. At around 6 or 7 months, your baby begins to realize that he’s separate from you and that you can leave him alone. This is when separation anxiety usually kicks in, and it can last well into the second year.
But once your child becomes more social, and more confident that you will, in fact, come back for him when you leave him at daycare or with a sitter, he’ll be able to move forward and forge his own identity. By the toddler years, his growing independence may have blossomed enough to cause some problems: Wanting things “my way” is at the heart of many temper tantrums.
How it develops
1 to 6 months
Until her half birthday, your child will completely identify with her primary caregiver. Working on gaining control over her basic movements and reflexes, she can’t even think about the process of forming her own identity during those first few months. Her primary concern is filling her immediate needs for food, love, and attention.
You may start to notice the first signs of budding independence at about 4 months, when your baby discovers that she can cry to get your attention. That’s one of the first steps in learning that she has an independent will and that how she behaves can have an impact on others – namely you.
A famous study shows exactly how unaware babies are of their own existence. Researchers placed several infants under the age of 1 in front of a mirror to see whether they understood that the reflections were images of themselves.
They didn’t. The babies would pat their mirror images, behaving as if they were seeing another baby. And when researchers dabbed red rouge on the babies’ noses and plopped them back in front of the mirror, they always tried to touch their reflections’ noses, not their own.
7 to 12 months
At around 7 months your baby will realize that he’s independent of you. While this is an exciting cognitive milestone, this new understanding of separateness can make him anxious. He knows that you can leave him, but he doesn’t know that you’ll always come back, so he’s likely to burst into tears when you leave, even for a minute.
Resist the urge to sneak away when his back is turned – when you leave him at daycare, for example. It won’t help him cope, and it may just make him more afraid that you aren’t coming back. Hard as it can be, say goodbye and go while he’s watching.
13 to 24 months
Your baby is now making progress in differentiating herself from you and from the world around her. In the same British study mentioned above, researchers put rouge on the noses of children about 21 months of age. When these babies looked in the mirror, they touched their own noses: They understood that the reflections in the mirrors were images of themselves.
Your 2-year-old may still get upset when you leave her at daycare or with a sitter, but she’ll recover more quickly now because she’s more secure. Experience and her budding memory skills have taught her that you’ll come back after being gone for a while. You’ve built her trust by continually showing her that you love and care for her.
It’s also this trust that gives her the confidence to assert herself. Her insistence on wearing those green pajamas for the fifth night in a row, eating only certain foods, and climbing into her car seat by herself are all signs of her increasing independence.
25 to 36 months
Between the ages of 2 and 3, your toddler will continue to struggle for independence. He’ll wander farther away from you as he goes exploring, and he’ll continue to test his limits (coloring on the walls, for example, even if you tell him not to). In fact, “I can do it myself” is probably one of the most common refrains you’ll hear from your older toddler.
Your child needs a secure attachment to you before she can move away and explore her world. Consistently give her love and support, and she’ll build the confidence she needs to strike out on her own.
Beginning when she’s an infant, respond immediately to your baby’s cries. Build that crucial bond by feeding her when she’s hungry, changing her diapers when they’re dirty, and smiling and talking with her when she’s alert.
You can play games with your baby to enhance her understanding of separation and return (so she learns not to panic when you leave her for a while). For example, play peekaboo by covering your face or ducking behind a piece of furniture, or hide a toy beneath a blanket and find it together. Not only do these games teach a lesson, the interaction fosters her sense of closeness to you.
To develop independence, your child needs to test her limits and explore her surroundings, so provide her with a safe home environment. Instead of running around saying “no” every time she touches something that could harm her, keep dangerous objects out of her reach and plenty of safe ones within it.
Encourage independence and a growing sense of self by giving your child choices and things she can do on her own. A choice between two outfits, snacks, or afternoon activities allows your child to think for herself, and having her drink from a cup or put her toys back into their container shows her she’s learning to help herself.
Keep in mind that just because your child is starting to break out on her own doesn’t mean she’ll require less of your comfort and love. While she may grow less needy, she still craves your constant care.
Encourage her any time she tries something on her own, but don’t push her away when she runs back to you for support. She’ll want and need your reassurance for a long time to come.
When to be concerned
Although separation anxiety is normal for babies between 10 months and 2 years, you should consult your child’s doctor if his anxiety becomes so overwhelming that he’s unable to do anything without you by his side, or if he’s inconsolable even after you’re long gone from his presence.
What comes next
With age comes greater independence and self-awareness. Each year will bring more things that your child will want to do on her own. As your child gets older, she’ll become more knowledgeable about herself and the scope of her abilities.
Future developments include the ability to prepare her own food, make friends, and go to school.
Month to Month Development Milestones
Newborn infants’ best visual experience is limited to close distances. The eye-to-eye distance between a mother’s face and her feeding baby’s face (8 to 15 inches) is optimum. Because of this closeup range of vision, it is difficult for a newborn to follow a moving object. But you will notice she will spend longer periods of time studying your face during this first month of life. Talking to her while maintaining close eye-to-eye contact will maximize the bonding experience. Babies do see in color from birth; however, they prefer to regard black and white stripes and bright red objects.
Your 2-month-old has matured from a glorified doll to a real human being! He will smile at and with you and make purposeful sounds to keep your attention. You even have a solid sense that he recognizes your face and voice as belonging to someone very important in his life. Enjoy this special time by singing songs and having conversations about day-to-day events. Experiencing this visual and auditory input will lay an important foundation for language reception and expression over the next few months.
By 3 months of age, infants can bring their hands to the midline (in front of their face). This promotes several benefits: they can easily get their fingers, thumb, and often fist into their mouths, enabling them to suck on these body parts and thus promote self-calming skills (vs. having to rely on their parents). In addition, the ability to reach out with their hands and tactilely interact with their environment leads to much excitement. During this period, it is important for infants to experience “tummy time” – (i.e., placement on the tummy). This position promotes utilization of back and neck muscles. For infants with flattening of their head due to positioning restrictions of lying on the back, the prone position will also help alleviate this cosmetic issue.
The 4-month-old baby is generally a very happy person. They can recognize and anticipate predictable events and express their emotions with great verbal enthusiasm. Gone are the days of intermittent and soft cooing. By 4 months of age infants will laugh with gusto. The opposite is also true – take away their pleasure and be prepared for howls of rage and frustration. Babies of this age also love more vigorous play, e.g., bouncing on your lap or being held up high in the air. Throwing a baby into the air is not recommended due to their weak neck muscles and the potential whiplash effect and brain injury.
The vision capabilities of a 5-month-old baby have matured tremendously. She can follow the movement of objects both close up and far away. Brightly-colored and contrasting colors are greeted with excitement and enthusiasm. Similarly, expressive language skills have also advanced. The ability to make repetitive sounds (e.g. “dada”) will bring huge rewards of adult interaction and excitement. This is also the age of practicing making loud vocalizations for the pure excitement of demonstrating a new skill set. Singing songs, reading books and pointing out objects in books and the local environment provide the early foundation of language acquisition.
Babies learn to sit independently between 6 to 8 months of age. Acquiring this skill is a wonderful accomplishment from your child’s perspective. He can attain an elevated position and get a much more complete view of the horizontal world – a task not available when lying on your back or stomach. Sitting also allows both hands to be free to explore this new world. Everything that can be grabbed will immediately go into your child’s mouth. Safety is paramount. Any object less than the diameter of the cardboard tube of a roll of toilet paper is a potential choking hazard.
Between 7 and 9 months of age infants advance through several stages of fine motor skills. The unsophisticated two-handed grabbing of large objects is gradually refined to the “pincer grasp” – picking up tiny objects (carpet fuzz balls is a classic example) using only the thumb and pointer finger. Unfortunately, the mandatory urge to place small, chokable objects into the mouth is extraordinary powerful.
The best way to ensure a safe environment is to get down on your hands and knees and see the world from your child’s perspective. Small food items, coins, tiny rocks, and other assorted potentially lethal items must be discovered by you before being discovered by your child.
Many 8-month-old children are learning how to pull to stand. When your child is mastering this skill, it is time to lower the crib mattress, take out any large objects or bumpers that might act like a step stool and enable your baby to escape (by falling) from their crib. In addition, pulling to stand next to the couch enables your infant to explore the area under a sofa cushion and discover objects perfect for choking (e.g., peanuts from the recently viewed football game.)
Many 9-month-old children find exploration of their parent’s faces great fun. Using their “pointer finger” as a means of exploration of your mouth, nose, eyes, and ears reinforces their fine motor skills as well as generating squeals of delight or pain depending on whether you received a poke in the eye or not. Many children also enjoy patting your face with their open palm. Equally exciting is to remove objects out of a larger container. A box containing various sizes of Tupperware containers allow mastery of the idea of relative size (big vs. little). In addition, banging objects together provides incredible joy to your child as it reinforces mastery and predictability over their environment.
One of the most remarkable developments occurs around 10 months of age: the concept of “object permanence.” This skill enables your child to realize that even though a desired toy or person can’t be seen or heard, it still exists. Younger infants operate on an “out of sight…out of mind” capability. A 10-month-old child realizes that mom still exists when she leaves him in a playpen to go answer the first doorbell. The corollary to object permanence is separation anxiety – i.e. “I know you should be here and I feel abandoned.” Games which reinforce object permanence such a “peek a boo” prompt squeals of delight.
Learning language is much more efficient as an active endeavor. Your 11-month-old will master language more quickly and more completely by hearing conversations, enjoying singing (especially with hand motions such as with “Itsy-bitsy-spider”) and just hearing you talk out loud. If more than one language is spoken in your household, don’t hold back but do point out both (or more) words for the same concept – e.g.. “It’s a “cat” or “gato” or “chat.” The various hi-tech passive DVDs, games, and TV shows can’t compete with the human experience. Your baby likes you more than Big Bird.
Your Baby’s Development
Developmental milestones are often rather broad. For instance, a child generally learns to walk independently between 9 and 16 months of age – that’s a 7-month range! Multiple studies indicate that accomplishing a skill (e.g., walking independently) is not a predictor for future superiority of that skill set. Some children enjoy certain activities more than others, yet all children ultimately accomplish the requisite developmental milestones to be considered normal. If you have any questions, speak with your child’s pediatrician.
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Ages & Stages – HealthyChildren.org
Pregnancy is a time of anticipation, excitement, preparation, and, for many new parents, uncertainty. The nine months of pregnancy will give you time to have your questions answered, calm your fears, and prepare yourself for the realities of parenthood. This section contains some guidelines to help you with the most important of these preparations.
Baby: 0-12 mos.
It doesn’t take long to develop the confidence and calm of an experienced parent. Your baby will give you the most important information—how she likes to be treated, talked to, held, and comforted. This section address the most common questions and concerns that arise during the first months of life.
Toddler: 1-3 yrs.
Your child is advancing from infancy toward and into the preschool years. During this time, his physical growth and motor development will slow, but you can expect to see some tremendous intellectual, social, and emotional changes.
Preschool: 3-5 yrs.
Your child is advancing from infancy toward and into the preschool years. During this time, his physical growth and motor development will slow, but you can expect to see some tremendous intellectual, social, and emotional changes.
Gradeschooler: 5-12 yrs.
Your child should feel confident in her ability to meet the challenges in her life. This sense of personal power evolves from having successful life experiences in solving problems independently, being creative and getting results for her efforts.
Adolescence can be a challenge for parents. Your youngster may at times be a source of frustration and exasperation, not to mention financial stress. But these years also bring many, many moments of joy, pride, laughter and closeness.
A young adult who goes away to a college or a job far from home has to build a social support system from the ground up. At the same time, he may have to acclimate himself to a drastically different environment.
90,000 Newborn baby: first days and weeks
A newly born baby is completely different from the plump, ruddy and smiling children from magazine covers. He looks and behaves quite differently from two or three month old babies, so often young
parents are confused: is this shriveled red man their child? Yes, that’s exactly what newborn babies look like. But in the first month in a baby’s life, so many important events will happen,
that very soon mom and dad will not recognize their baby.
The newly born baby looks a bit like an alien: it has a disproportionately large head and a small body. His arms and legs
bent at an angle uncharacteristic for humans. It seems that even taking such a baby in your arms is difficult – he is so small and defenseless. Which of the family does the newborn look like, too, for now, to say
hard – his face is still swollen: swollen eyelids hide disproportionately huge slits in his eyes, so that on the first day of his life, if he looks like anyone, it’s like a chipmunk.The baby’s nose is flattened
the chin is slightly depressed, in general, there may be some asymmetry in the face. This happens because the baby walked head first and the face naturally swells from this. During the first
day of life, the tumor gradually subsides, the facial bones fall into place, the facial features change for the better. Sometimes there are pinkish-reddish spots on the forehead, bridge of the nose or the back of the baby’s head
with a bluish tint, slightly raised above the surface of the skin. They are very large, especially the occipital.When the child screams or pushes, these spots appear brighter. It all scares
young mothers, and this is understandable: some red spots, and even on the face! But this is a completely typical phenomenon for a newly born baby, and these spots are called telangiectasia – persistent
expansion of the superficial vessels of the skin and mucous membranes. They are completely harmless and go away on their own during the first or second months of life. By the way, they are popularly called “spots
stork “: if we imagine that the stork was holding the head of a child, then the marks from the beak will just be located on the bridge of the nose and back of the head.
A newborn looks and behaves quite differently from two or three-month-old babies, so often young parents are confused: is this wrinkled red man really their child?
From the 9th to 11th day, the child already distinguishes sounds, reacting by crying to sharp, loud ones, but does not yet listen to them. He begins to listen between the 3rd and 5th weeks of life
Already on the first day of life in a healthy newborn, more than 170 are recorded, and on the 10th day of life – more than 550 separate and general movements per minute! Of course, we are talking about immature, uncoordinated movements.
The head of a newborn is also not as smooth and round as in advertising pictures, it can generally be of very different shapes – elongated, flattened or rounded.This is how mother nature came up with it –
so that the head during childbirth does not suffer from strong pressure, the bones of the child’s skull are not tightly connected, and when he passes through the birth canal, they can move (well, so that nothing unnecessary and
she was not hurt). If you touch the baby’s head, then you can even clearly distinguish the protrusions formed as a result of the partial overlap of the skull bones when squeezed during
childbirth. But literally in a few days, the head of a healthy child takes on a rounded shape.
If you touch the top of the baby’s head, you can feel some soft area and feel how it pulsates at hand. “What is it? – parents think. – A hole in your head? No, this is the so-called
fontanelle, just that area in the skull where the bones are not tightly connected and under them is still a connecting membrane. The second soft spot is located on the parietal region of the head, closer to her
back. These areas can be touched and washed without fear, nothing will happen to the child’s head.As the bones of the skull grow, the fontanelle decreases, and by the year it will be replaced by real hard bone tissue.
The baby’s skin immediately after delivery is covered with a whitish sticky substance. This is the so-called vernacular lubricant, which protects the baby’s skin during intrauterine life from the effects of amniotic fluid and makes it easier
him passing through the birth canal during childbirth. Her mother usually does not see all of her, because the lubricant is immediately removed in the delivery room. But some of its remnants may be in the folds of the skin, behind the ears and
in the area of the external genital organs in girls.So it will have to be removed at home by yourself, with a cotton pad (swab) moistened with any baby oil. Otherwise, in the folds, the grease will persist in it.
different microorganisms will begin to multiply. Some babies are born a little shaggy – delicate hairs grow on their backs, shoulders, cheeks and some other parts of the body, which
called lanugo. Sometimes such a cover looks as thick as fur, and it seems that the child will remain shaggy for the rest of his life. No, lanugo will not disappear quickly, but by almost three months
will not.In general, the skin of newborns on the first day looks different. Immediately after birth, it is cyanotic, and after a few hours it becomes bright red. In large babies, the skin can be smooth, well-filled, and thick.
In smaller children, it is slightly wrinkled. There are babies with very thin skin, blood vessels even shine through it. Since the arms and legs are the final points of blood delivery,
they will be cold and bluish for the first few hours or days. As for the amount of hair, it can be different: from complete absence to luxurious head of hair.
In general, if you look at the average newborn, he flew to us from another planet, and only: the head is large and strange in shape, the body is thin and small, the arms and legs are also thin. Myself
red, and in some places even blue. The skin is thin and translucent. The face, too, somehow little resembles a human, and some children are also hairy! There is something to be surprised at by young parents. But this is only the first
day, you have to wait a little, and soon the child will change.
In the first week, the baby will begin to change especially strongly – he will become much prettier: the swelling of the face will subside, the eyes will open wider, the shape of the head will become more familiar to the eyes.But here are nice curves and cute
there won’t be any baby wrinkles yet. And in general, at this time, an already thin newborn will lose even more weight. This “weight loss” is a natural process, the so-called
physiological weight loss. Weight decreases because immediately after birth, the baby loses some of the water through the skin, dries up its umbilical cord residue, excretes meconium (first feces) and urine, and also because
the baby is still receiving a small amount of milk from the mother. Maximum weight loss usually occurs by the third to fifth day and is normally no more than 6–8% of body weight at birth.In it
time mom and baby are usually discharged from the hospital, but there is no need to worry. By the seventh or tenth day of life, a healthy baby will restore its previous parameters.
By the way, in the first week (usually in the first days) the umbilical cord will fall off and an umbilical wound will remain in its place. For some, it will heal very quickly – in 8-10 days, but it can take longer (up to three weeks) to heal.
The second thing that will change in the baby in the first seven days is the condition of his skin. Red skin color (doctors call it “simple erythema”) is the brightest on the second day after birth, completely
will disappear at the end of the first week of life.And the skin will become the usual pale pink color. Only parents will calm down a little about the skin, as new changes await them: on the third or fifth day of life, the skin
may start to peel off, especially on the stomach and chest. What is it? Is the child missing something? No, it’s normal: this is how the skin adapts to a new life (not watery, but airy). This lasts
peeling for about a week and goes away on its own, but the peeling places can be lubricated with a moisturizing baby cream or cosmetic milk. But this is not all that can happen to the skin: not often, but it happens that
in children in the first week of life, the so-called toxic erythema appears – a spotty rash with grayish-yellow seals in the center.The rash is most common
on the extensor surfaces of the arms and legs around the joints, on the chest. “Chickenpox, rubella, some kind of contagious disease?” – think moms and dads. No, this is also an adaptation of the skin to a new life.
The well-being of the babies is not disturbed, the body temperature is normal. Within one to three days, new rashes may appear, after two to three days the rash disappears by itself.
In addition, on the second or third day of life, 60–70% of children have their skin turns yellow, the maximum yellowness occurs on the third or fourth day, and by the end of the first week it disappears.This is how the physiological
jaundice of a newborn is a condition in which the amount of bile pigment, bilirubin, increases in the baby’s body. Someone will have jaundice similar to
light and pleasant tan (parents may not even notice it), and for someone the baby will turn specifically yellow. This is completely normal for a healthy child. Very fast bilirubin levels
returns to normal and the skin color becomes normal again. But if the jaundice does not disappear or the child is very yellow, you need to see a doctor.
In the first one or two days, all newborns lose their original stool (meconium) – a thick, viscous mass of dark green color. On the third or fourth day of life, a transitional stool appears –
lumps, mucus, dark green areas alternate with greenish and yellow. No, this is not an intestinal disorder, it is just that the gastrointestinal tract adjusts (goes) to work. By the end of the first week of life, stools
for the majority it becomes like a yellow gruel, so it will continue.
Not a common phenomenon, but it must be said about it too. In some children, on the third or fourth day of life, the mammary glands are swollen (both in girls and boys). They maximally increase by the seventh-eighth day, of which even
liquid discharge may appear. Some girls sometimes have very little vaginal bleeding during the first day. This is the so-called hormonal crisis –
it arises from the action of maternal hormones – estrogens (they penetrate the placenta during childbirth).At the peak of estrogen action, the signs of a hormonal crisis are maximal, then
hormones are cleared from the body and symptoms gradually disappear. Therefore, you do not need to apply a cabbage leaf to the chest, make compresses with camphor or something else: everything will pass by itself.
After the first week of life, the baby will begin to gain weight intensively. He must add at least 600 g in the first month, well, and some heroes add 1000 g each. It is clear that with weight gain, the appearance of a newborn will be
change for the better: the child himself will be noticeably rounded, the skin will still be dry at first, but gradually it will become smoother and denser.But all the same, the baby will still be far from the grown baby.
To begin with, the child mostly sleeps and eats for the entire first month of life, but he will not be awake for long. The child also does not have any meaningful actions and movements at this time. So
put rattles and other entertainment aside, they are not needed yet.
In general, baby’s movements can scare moms and dads a little. For example, parents will notice that the baby’s arms and legs are tense all the time. It looks like this: the arms are bent at all joints, brought to
torso and pressed against the chest, hands are clenched into fists.The legs of the crumbs are also bent at the joints and abducted at the hips. This is hypertonicity – an increased tone of the flexor muscles, but this is completely normal.
a phenomenon that all babies have up to a certain age. By 3.5-4 months, the physiological hypertonicity will weaken, the movements will become more coordinated, the hand will open. It will also be seen that the newborn
constantly makes some kind of movement, and very chaotic. This is also the norm, because the child’s nervous system is still immature, which is why he cannot perform coordinated movements.Usually chaotic twitching
disappear in the second month of life.
What about vision and hearing? The color of the eyes in children is almost always blue, because there is no melanin in the iris – the body’s natural pigment. By six months, melanin begins to be produced, and the baby has a constant color
eye. Some babies, especially those with dark skin, have light brown eyes from birth. The newborn’s vision is still defective. No clarity, the child is unable to concentrate
look, sometimes you can notice twitching of the eyeballs from side to side (nystagmus).Therefore, there is no point in a mobile (carousel) above the bed, it will be needed later – from the 2nd month. How
even a baby can surprise a mother, so it is a squint. Doctors explain it by the weakness of the abductor muscles of the eye, it’s good that by 6 months the squint goes away on its own. All these are normal phenomena for a newborn, which arise due to
immaturity of his organs. It is interesting that the tears of the crumbs appear from the 3-4th week of life.
Many young parents, as soon as they bring their child from the hospital, walk around the apartment on tiptoe, fearing to disturb the newborn.In fact, in the first few days after birth, the baby still does not hear very well.
Approximately in the middle of the 2nd week of life, he will begin to respond to a loud, sharp sound – he will shudder or blink. And only by the 3rd week, the baby attaches much more importance to the noises of the external environment.
But the thing that will please parents with their child is a smile – it appears in the first two or three weeks of life. A smile means that the baby is happy and wants to communicate. Somewhere in the same time, lying on
stomach, the baby will begin to turn his head to the side, then he will try to slightly raise it.All these are the first and very important achievements of the baby.
These are just a few of the main changes that occur to a child in the first month of life. Other parents are invisible and not so important, the doctor will pay attention to them. Moreover, almost immediately the baby will become
for mom and dad the best and most important person in the world. And it won’t be so important when he starts to look like an advertising baby, the main thing is that he looks like his family!
Memo for parents
- The newly born baby looks a bit like an alien: it has a disproportionately large head and a small body.Its arms and legs are bent at an angle uncharacteristic for humans.
- The head of a newborn can be of many different shapes, because its bones are mobile and displaced as it passes through the birth canal.
- In the first week, the baby will begin to change especially strongly – he will become much prettier: the swelling of the face will subside, the eyes will open wider, the shape of the head will become more familiar to the eyes
- For the entire first month of life, the child mainly sleeps and eats, but he will not be awake for long.The child also has no meaningful actions and movements at this time
Newborn baby: concerns and aspects
Congratulations, you are now parents! The appearance of a new little person in the house is accompanied not only by joy and happiness, but also by many worries – but we are always ready to help! Here we will talk about the development of the child from the moment of birth and throughout the entire first month of life, talk about how much a child needs to sleep and eat during this period and what is important to know about his health.Best of all, his pediatrician will tell you about the development of the child by months, and in this article we will consolidate the knowledge gained and give useful advice. So, let’s see what happens to the baby in the first, second, third and fourth weeks of life!
Stages of development of the baby
In the first month, the baby gets used to life outside the mother’s womb. At the same time, it grows and changes at an astonishing rate. The most interesting of these changes are:
Newborn growth and physical development: If the baby looks a little “strange”, that’s ok
Newborns may lose weight in the first few days by removing excess fluid.Most often, this weight is gained back very quickly, after 10 days it reaches birth weight, which is called physiological weight loss. At pediatrician appointments, the child’s body length, weight and head circumference are measured. According to these indicators, the doctor monitors the growth rate of the baby. This article explains how a child’s growth charts can help a doctor.
Surely you can’t get enough of a new person in your life now. Sometimes it may seem that he looks “strange”, because his body is still trying to adapt to the new reality.In the first few weeks, the baby may show the following features:
In the first few days or weeks after birth, the baby may be covered with fine hairs (lanugo), then they disappear.
The child may have flaky skin.
Reddish spots, also called “salmon” or “stork bites”, may appear on the face or neck. Most often, they go away after a few months.
The child’s genitals and nipple area may swell, but this goes away quickly.
Two soft areas can be felt on the baby’s head, usually one. These are fontanelles, areas of fusion of the bones of the skull, which are separated from the brain by a dense membrane.
If you have had a vaginal birth, the baby’s skull may be slightly elongated and elongated. This is due to the fact that the bones of the skull are temporarily rearranged to make it easier for the baby to pass through the birth canal. Soon the baby’s head will take on a more familiar shape.
Most of the time, the baby sleeps, curled up in a ball, just like in the mother’s belly.Towards the end of the first month, he will begin to straighten his legs and arms and begin to stretch.
Feelings: The baby likes it when his mother picks him up
Touch is the most important feeling for a newborn, by the nature of touch it can determine the mood of the mother. In his mother’s arms, he feels calm and safe. Support the baby’s head and neck so that his head does not wobble in different directions due to the weak neck. The baby is soothed by motion sickness, while massage helps the baby and mother to build attachment.
The range of vision of a child at this age does not exceed 20-30 centimeters, but at the same time he sees his mother’s face when she picks him up. Now he often moves his hands in front of his face and focuses on them. He notices the transition from darkness to light, but he cannot yet clearly distinguish colors.
As a rule, newborns enjoy high pitched tone and “lisp”. When mom talks to him, he can turn his head towards her.
Movement: The baby has strong reflexes, especially the grasping one
At first, the baby can make very sharp, jerky movements, but over the next few months he will learn to control them.The baby has some reflexes already from birth, as they grow older, many of them fade away:
Search. If you pat your baby on the cheek or corner of the mouth, he turns the head towards the finger.
Sucking. Sucking reflex is innate, but it takes practice to suck, breathe and swallow at the same time, so it will take a little time for the baby to get used to feeding.
Moro Reflex. When a child hears a sudden loud sound or his head suddenly changes position, he sharply spreads the arms and legs to the sides and brings them together.
Grabbing. If you put your finger in the palm of a newborn, he will grasp it firmly. However, it is not worth holding it like that – the baby still does not control the grip strength and may suddenly release his finger.
Automatic walking reflex. Raising the baby under the armpits and placing him so that the soles touch the support, you will see that he will begin to touch his legs.
And others (crawling, knee, plantar, etc.)
Mental development of the child: His first smile will be remembered for a lifetime
At the beginning of the first month of life, the baby can smile in a dream. It is not yet clear what exactly triggers this reflex; it is possible that the child reacts in this way to some kind of internal stimulus. And by the end of the month or at the beginning of the next, that very real smile appears. The baby smiles in response to mom’s smile or the sound of her voice.Over time, he will understand that with the help of a smile, you can communicate with others.
Newborns cry to communicate that they are hungry or uncomfortable, and to relieve stress. If your baby is crying but doesn’t want to eat or spit up, or doesn’t need to change a diaper, most likely he wants your attention. To calm him down, take him in your arms, speak to him in a gentle voice. Sometimes a baby crying constantly can be a symptom of something more serious, so if it bothers you, take your baby to see the pediatrician.
Already in the first days and weeks of a baby’s life, you can get some idea of his character. Does he cry when he gets the diaper wet, or is he okay with everything? Does he get scared easily? If you already have children, at this stage you can notice differences in the character of the baby and his older siblings.
What to do for the correct development of the newborn
It is best to focus on the recommendations of the pediatrician, but these tips will definitely not hurt:
Skin-to-skin contact. Mothers are advised to put their naked baby on their breasts more often during the first months of life. This is called the “kangaroo method”. Skin-to-skin skin-to-skin contact has many benefits – it builds a stronger bond with your baby and helps him regulate breathing and pulse, and soothes your baby with the familiar scent and pounding of your heart.
Placement on stomach . Several times a day, we advise placing the baby on the floor with his tummy or on a flat hard surface for a couple of minutes under the close supervision of the mother.So he will be able to strengthen the muscles of the neck and shoulder girdle. While the baby is lying on his tummy, you can play educational games with him.
We shoot with eyes. As vision improves, the baby begins to more actively follow moving objects with his gaze. Practice with him: slowly move something in front of the baby’s face, such as a rattle.
Feeding a newborn: how much should a baby eat in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th weeks of life?
Fortunately, there is no need to stick to a tight schedule.Watch your baby and notice how he behaves when he is hungry. At this stage, the child signals that he is hungry with the help of the search reflex (see the description of reflexes), he can also smack his lips or suck on the fist. Crying a baby can also show that he is hungry, but it is better to feed him earlier and not lead to frustration. On average, a child needs at least eight feedings per day, both day and night. The baby may ask to feed him more often during the period of growth spikes – and they occur for each child in different ways, most often at the end of the second week and between the third and sixth weeks.When the baby is full, he looks lethargic or falls asleep. Nursing mothers are often worried about the questions: “Is there enough milk?”, “Is the baby grasping and sucking correctly?” In such cases, it is advisable to consult a pediatrician or breastfeeding specialist. But all over the world they adhere to the rule of feeding at the request of the baby, if there is no medical indication for a different feeding regimen.
Should my child be given vitamins and supplements?
For the introduction of vitamins and supplements in the child’s diet, regardless of the feeding method (breastfeeding, formula feeding, or a combination of breastfeeding and formula feeding), it is best to consult a pediatrician.For example, children up to months of age are shown the appointment of vitamin D in certain dosages.
Counting wet diapers
Moms are constantly worried about whether the baby is getting enough nutrition. To verify this, you can count how many times a day you change diapers and how they look. Do not be alarmed if, in the first few days, when you unfold the diaper, you see a thick, dark green or black substance. A baby’s first stool is made up mostly of meconium. After the release of meconium from the body, the stool becomes softer and becomes yellow-green.Normally, during the day, you will have to change six wet diapers and three to four diapers with a chair, but, of course, all children are different.
Also, that the baby is getting enough food can be understood by the way he swallows (there should be a distinct sound of swallowing). If the baby behaves calmly for several hours after feeding, then he is full. Measurements at the pediatrician’s appointment can also tell you if your child is getting enough nutrients to grow.In addition, if the child is getting heavier, there are more and more folds on the limbs (constrictions), and the newborn’s wardrobe changes quickly, then obviously the baby is doing well with increments.
At first it will be difficult to change diapers, but you will quickly get the hang of it!
How much does a newborn sleep?
During the first month, the newborn falls asleep about three to four times a day and sleeps for at least 16 hours. Since there is very little milk in the baby’s stomach, that is, it will be quite often, and it is NOT necessary to wake up if he does not wake up himself and everything is fine with increments.While the child does not yet distinguish between day and night, you can teach him to change cycles. To do this, during night feedings, do not turn on the bright light, use a night light, change diapers as soon as possible and immediately put the baby to sleep on the back.
During the first year of life, the child should always be put to sleep on the back of the crib. The bed should be in the mother’s bedroom, and there should be no foreign objects in it, such as loose sheets, extra blankets, linings, pillows, soft bumpers and toys.This can reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), a phenomenon in which apparently healthy children die suddenly before the age of one year. Learn about all the ways you can minimize the risks of SIDS. Healthy newborn sleep has a rule of three Cs. The child should sleep:
on the BACK,
in OWN crib.
One day in the life of a baby
The life of a newborn baby does not obey a clear daily routine, however, an approximate schedule of feeding, sleeping, bathing and playing can be made:
Walking on the street
If the weather is relatively good, you can safely to take out for a walk, the main thing is to dress him appropriately.The child does not yet know how to regulate body temperature, so it is better to adhere to the following rule: put one more layer of clothing on the baby than on yourself. If it’s hot outside, keep your baby in the shade, as burns can easily form on the delicate skin of newborns. If it is cold or raining outside, it is recommended to give up a long walk, while the child must have a warm hat and several layers of clothing. Also bring a blanket with you. How do you know if your baby is doing well while walking? Feel his chest, arms and legs – the chest should be warm, and the arms and legs are slightly colder than the rest of the body.But remember, the main thing is not to overheat the child. And as he grows up, you can walk in ANY weather, the main thing is to be properly dressed for both the baby and his accompanying person.
How to change a diaper
Changing diapers is an integral part of any mother’s daily routine. Before starting, make sure you have everything you need close at hand. Support the child with one hand. Do not leave your baby unattended on the changing table or on any high surface – the baby can twitch and fall even from a stationary state.To avoid rashes and skin inflammation, wet and dirty diapers should be changed as soon as possible. After removing the diaper, wipe the baby’s skin with a damp cloth, then put on a fresh diaper. If in doubt, read the detailed recommendations on how to change a diaper. You will soon be a real pro.
How to bathe a newborn under one, two, three or four weeks
To prevent the umbilical wound from getting wet, wipe the baby with a damp sponge for the first couple of weeks until the crust falls off.When the wound heals, you can bathe your child in a tub or sink. Bathing your baby too often is not worth it – three times a week during the first year of life is enough, especially if you thoroughly wipe the area under the diapers after each change. Here are some tips on how to bathe your newborn baby:
The water should be warm, but not hot. Check the temperature on the skin of your wrist or elbow.
Prepare everything you need for bathing. Don’t leave your baby unattended.
Bathe your baby immediately after swaddling to prevent the baby from catching a cold.
When placing your baby in the tub or sink and bathing, support the head. Just in case, keep the baby’s head and upper torso above the water.
The baby’s face should be washed with a cloth and mild soap, and once or twice a week, wash his hair with shampoo.
If you have a boy, you just need to rinse his genitals in soapy water, just like the rest of the diaper area.Check with your pediatrician – he will tell you when it is already possible and necessary to move the foreskin and rinse the area under it.
You will find more information on how to bathe your newborn in our article. It’s not difficult at all!
Care of the umbilical wound
Care must be taken to ensure that the umbilical wound is not dirty or wet until the crust dries and falls off. This usually happens in the third week. After that, gently wipe the redness with a cotton swab or gauze pad moistened with alcohol with an antiseptic solution.If there is blood in the navel or if there are signs of infection, such as foul-smelling yellow pus or skin redness, see your pediatrician. More information on how to care for your umbilical wound can be found in the article at the link.
Baby’s health: Can guests visit him?
At this stage, mothers are often worried about the following questions:
Can guests be allowed to visit the child? Of course, everyone wants friends and family to visit in the first few days after the baby is born.Try not to have too many guests, and the visit is not too long or noisy. Mom and baby need rest. By the end of the first month of the child’s life, selected guests can be allowed to visit him, provided that they are not sick with anything. Make sure guests wash their hands before handling your baby.
Jaundice. If the baby’s skin has turned yellowish, it is likely that he has jaundice, which means that the liver is not yet able to filter the chemical compound bilirubin from the blood.Contact your pediatrician – he will diagnose and prescribe treatment if necessary.
High temperature. Children often have a high fever at this stage, but sometimes it is difficult to determine. Babies under 12 months of age require an urgent check-up by a doctor if they have a high fever, so if your baby is hot to the touch or is particularly restless, take his temperature with a rectal thermometer. If the temperature is above 38 ° C, see a doctor immediately.
How to care for your genitals after circumcision. The most important thing is to keep the genitals clean. Wash the area with mild soap and water. For a week after circumcision, there may be redness and yellow discharge in the genital area – this is completely normal. However, if there is swelling, scabs, or flocculent pus, see your doctor.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much should a newborn baby weigh?
About 80 percent of full-term babies (40 weeks) weigh between 2.6 kg and 3.8 kg.
What toys to buy for a newborn?
We recommend choosing a toy that you can take with you and hang over the bed. It is better if it is in bright contrasting colors or patterns. At this age, the ideal choice is a toy turntable with unobtrusive music or a bright soft rattle toy.
Do newborns need vitamin supplements?
Experts believe that by the end of the first month of life, newborns only need vitamin D supplements in drops (if it is not part of the formula for artificial feeding).In any case, it is best to consult a doctor.
What to give a 1 week old baby from constipation?
Consult your pediatrician before giving your one-week-old baby anything other than breast milk or formula, even if you think your baby is constipated. The work of the gastrointestinal tract is a purely individual matter, the formation of intestinal motility will not end soon and depends on age. However, it is believed that if a newborn baby has not had a bowel movement for more than a day, he may be constipated.Seek advice from your pediatrician – this sometimes happens with breastfed babies.
Young parents: a carnival of emotions!
Immediately after childbirth, mother is overwhelmed with a variety of emotions – happiness, pain, fatigue. In addition, stress and hormonal changes directly affect the intensity of experiences. Your daily routine now adjusts to your feeding cycles, diaper changes, bedding cycles. Plus, you sleep less often than before. Know that all parents go through this, and if you feel like crying, don’t hesitate.But if you constantly experience feelings of deep sadness, emptiness, apathy, or despair, you may have postpartum depression. Be sure to tell your doctor about this, because there are ways to alleviate your condition.
After any childbirth, whether natural, or through a cesarean section, the body is restored gradually. Here’s what can happen to him at this stage:
Bleeding. Blood and uterine lining comes out of you (this vaginal discharge is called “lochia”).At first, there may be a lot of blood, but after a while it will subside. If you have to change two pads per hour for two hours in a row, see your doctor.
Uterine contractions. Postpartum pain may be present for up to 10 days after birth as the uterus returns to its normal size.
Pain in the perineal region. During vaginal birth, the skin between the vagina and the anus (perineum) is stretched to allow the baby’s head to pass through.Sometimes tears occur in this area that heal on their own or require stitches. Apply cold lotions to the area to relieve swelling and pain. Also, place a soft pillow before sitting down.
Distended abdomen. For a while after giving birth, your belly may still be large, as if you were still pregnant. It is difficult for the abdominal muscles to immediately return to their usual position. Give the body time to recover, and before starting to play sports, be sure to consult your doctor.
Constipation and hemorrhoids. You may find it difficult to go to the toilet in the first few days after giving birth. The reason for this may be pain, slowing of intestinal motility under the influence of painkillers, or simply lack of food before childbirth. In this case, seek the advice of your doctor. You may be better off by drinking more water and eating high fiber foods, limiting exercise and a sedentary lifestyle.
Fatigue. Don’t be surprised at fatigue – you and your body have been through a lot. It will take time to recover. In the meantime, ask friends or family to help you around the house, limit visits and sleep when your baby sleeps.
Follow your doctor’s instructions and advice for home recovery. Try to rest and eat right. And when the doctor permits, gradually start playing sports.
Checklist for this month
Make an appointment with your pediatrician by the time your baby is 1 month old.Ask your pediatrician if you need to come to other appointments, have tests, screenings, or get vaccinated this month. To control the growth and development of the child, it is recommended to visit the pediatrician at least once at the age of 2 to 4 weeks.
Check out the approximate vaccination schedule. Your doctor will tell you when and what vaccinations your child needs.
List questions to ask at your next appointment.
Make a list of emergency numbers and hang it on the refrigerator or save it to the memory of your mobile phone.Among them should be the phones of a pediatrician, poisoning services, ambulance (03 or another number).
Assemble a first aid kit for minor scratches and bruises.
Check the diaper size chart by weight.
Want to know what’s next? Here is an article on what happens to a 1 month old baby.
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Baby’s first year of life: motor development
We begin by emphasizing that “growth” and “development” are two distinct processes that are nevertheless related.For this reason, pediatricians measure length, weight and other growth criteria, but at the same time they ask parents about the child’s development – his movements, ability to grab objects, make eye contact, about the sounds he makes and speech development. Although each child has his own pace of development, dictated by genes and character, there are certain norms, according to which, at a certain age, he should already possess certain skills.
In the following I will describe the major milestones with additional emphasis on the development of gross motor skills and associated stimulation.Notice how the different developmental directions are interconnected and how we, as parents, can create the environment and stimulation that allows the child to reach their full developmental potential. Remember that development is not a linear process and children may skip certain stages or acquire certain motor skills at the same time. Therefore, refer to this overview only as a general basis for understanding the principles of child development.
0-2 + months
Let’s start from the beginning.When our baby is born, we can still notice the physiological flexibility left over from the time spent in the womb. During this period, the child’s movements are spontaneous and a little funny. They involve his entire body and are a continuation of movements in the womb. His head rotates from side to side. Make sure that the surface you lay it on is comfortable. At this stage, the child is driven by primary reactions. His vision is not yet fully developed and he can see mostly bright, contrasting colors.Bring your face 25-30 cm away from the child’s face, speak to him or sing gently. Children have a preference for certain individuals and remember voices from the time they were in the womb.
Over time and with the proposed stimulation (touch, sound, observation), the child’s development will continue. The child is already 2 months old. He already has better control over the movement of the head and can hold it steadily. The back and pelvis become longer and straighten on the surface, increasing the area of the body that the child can feel.By this time, the child already knows how to focus his gaze and intentionally smile in response to your smile. Try the following. Lie on your stomach on a play mat, lay your baby on her back and play with a colorful toy. You can gently place the toy in your child’s hand and see how he can hold it for a few seconds.
4-6 + months
As the child grows and develops, his large muscles (back, abdomen and buttocks) and small muscles (fingers, eyes, feet) become stronger.He begins to reach for various objects (note that the child can also reach with his leg – place toys that can be kicked or those that make a sound when touched, at the distance of the child’s outstretched leg). These initial grappling attempts may not be very accurate, but accuracy will increase with time and practice. This is one of the ways to teach the child about cause and effect relationships, as well as control over his environment. During this period, the child may unintentionally roll over from the abdomen to the back.The baby’s head is heavy in relation to the body, and when he turns his head, the body can reach for it, causing it to roll over. Oftentimes, this unintentional movement is accompanied by surprise or crying. Over time, the child will begin to do this on his own initiative. Lying on his back, the child trains the abdominal muscles by raising his legs and pressing his chin to his chest. Hang toys at various points. He will stretch his arms in different directions, strengthening different muscles. The wider the range of actions, the more effective the training will be.At this stage, the mid-body line becomes very clear when the child extends his limbs and brings his legs together.
Approaching the six-month mark, the child begins to revolve around himself. The strength of his chest and arms allows him to support the weight on his outstretched arms. He can now grasp any object with precision while lying on his back or on his stomach. Place the toy at an angle to encourage the child to turn in that direction.The child can now separate the movement of the pelvis and shoulders, which allows him to do half of the body rotation. He can control rolling from his back to his stomach and he likes to play on his tummy for longer. When he lies on his back, we can see the coordination of the arms and legs. He grabs himself by the knees or ankles, straightens the legs and pulls them back to the body. It’s fine! In this way, he examines his body, stretches his muscles and familiarizes himself with his legs using his hands and mouth. Soon after, you will be able to see the first attempts to crawl, in which the child can initially move backwards, lying on his chest (bell-like).As with any physical learning process, the beginning can be difficult and inconsistent. Practice, providing an open and supportive environment, placing the toy slightly out of the child’s reach, and active encouragement will help speed up the acquisition of new skills. Now the child can reach further, explore the environment and test boundaries. Your presence is essential. Be careful. He seeks your approval, cooperation and guidance.
8-10 + months
At about 8 months, the muscles are already strong enough to stand on all fours.The child can swing back and forth in this position. This is a natural way to train for crawling on all fours and for standing in the next step. This wiggle stimulates the vestibular apparatus (body sensation) and helps to strengthen the bones and joints of the limbs. Sometimes, at this stage, the child may begin to sit down. From a position on his side, he can lean on his hands and sit down. Now you can place the toys where the child can reach them while sitting. He is strong enough to straighten his back and keep his balance.He is able to support himself and not fall forward, and later he will also learn not to fall sideways. After that, he will develop the skill not to fall back. Remember that when setting up a safe play environment for a seated child, you should pay attention to what is on the sides and behind him. Sitting supports the development of vocal abilities, creates a new field of vision and frees up the hands for more challenging play. The muscles in the back and shoulders are strong enough to keep the torso in a stable position, and the arms and fingers are strong enough to play more advanced and deliberate games – the child intentionally reaches, holds, releases, pulls, turns and plays with both hands.Play causal games with your child – hide and show objects or roll a ball. Raise the toys up to the level of your child’s shoulders so that he or she exercises the ability to sit with a straight back.
From a stable sitting position, the child will move to crawling, sometimes combining crawling on all fours with bell crawling. Development is dynamic and happens at the same time. It is natural. When the baby is 10 months old, he will begin to pull himself up to a standing position and stay in it, leaning on furniture or toys.He will do it awkwardly at first, but this skill will improve with practice. The standing chin is a skill that gives the legs a new and very responsible role to carry the weight of the whole body. At this stage, new tasks appear: to learn how to maintain balance on a narrow basis and get used to a new height. Fortunately, the reward is immediate: the standing position opens up a new perspective, stimulates the acquisition of new motor skills and, of course, is the starting point for walking.After the child gains confidence in the new position, he will begin to walk around furniture and toys. Make sure that the child’s play environment is safe for this stage of development – first he will begin to walk sideways, and then forward and turn his torso. After a while, the baby will release his hands and move to standing without support. Now he is ready for the next stage of important development – walking.
The author of this article is Esther Dickstein Berman, Master’s Degree in Physiotherapy
Developmental Milestones: Motor Development ; R.Jason Gerber, Timothy Wilks, Christine Erdie-Lalena; Pediatrics in Review Vol.31 No.7 (2010)
Feet first: Object Exploration in Young Infants, James C. Galloway, Esther Thelen; Infant Behavior & Development 27: 107–112 (2004)
90,000 Newborns see their parents best from a distance of 30 cm
Scientists have calculated the distance from which newborn babies can distinguish a mother’s smile.It turned out that parents look most clearly from a distance of 30 cm.
Scientists have been wondering for many years how newborn children see the world around them. A huge number of myths have arisen in society on this topic: some believe that babies distinguish only black and white colors, others that babies perceive objects around them upside down. In fact, the eyes of newborns are similar in structure to the eyes of an adult, but visual acuity in babies is reduced.
At the same time, as researchers from Norway and Sweden have found out, babies are able to perceive faces, as well as emotions of people leaning over them at a distance of 30 cm, as early as two or three days after birth.If the distance increases to 60 cm, the visual image becomes too blurry and babies cannot distinguish between faces and emotions.
The study fills a gap in the understanding of visual perception in infants that has been a mystery for decades. The work of Scandinavian scientists also helps explain how children can mimic the facial expressions of adults in the early days of their lives, long before their eyesight becomes sufficiently developed. The text of the study can be found in the Journal of Vision .
“In the past, when researchers tried to understand what the newborn sees, they used photographs. However, the real world is dynamic. Therefore, we used images in motion, ”says Professor Sven Magnussen, one of the authors of the study.
Early in his career, Magnussen conducted a study of human visual perception. One day, about 15 years ago, he discussed with his colleagues whether newborns are really capable of perceiving the expressions on the faces of those around them.The researchers concluded that if children recognize and mimic facial expressions, it’s all about the movement of their faces.
“In those days, we had neither the equipment nor the technical expertise to test our idea. We returned to her again only a year ago. So our results are based on an old idea that nobody has tested, ”explained Magnussen.
As part of the study, scientists filmed male and female faces, whose expressions slowly changed, and then excluded from the video sequence emotions that were inaccessible to the understanding of babies.The scientists then showed the video to 42 adult participants in the experiment, including 33 women. The age of the participants in the experiment was from 20 to 43 years old. The idea of the scientists was that if adults cannot detect facial expressions, then, of course, newborns will also not be able to do this.
Researchers have selected four types of emotions: indifference, happiness, anger and surprise.
For the experiment, scientists deliberately blurred the video images, bringing them closer to what babies see.“We used designs made from black and white stripes. By choosing a specific width and frequency of stripes, you can get a gray image that the child will not pay attention to. We changed these parameters until the baby began to see the figure, fixing his gaze on it, ”explains Magnussen.
Adult participants correctly identified facial expressions in three out of four cases when watching video from a distance of 30 cm. When the distance increased to 120 cm, the percentage of correct answers was similar to that of guessing.This means that the distance at which babies are able to recognize facial expressions based on the visual information available to them is limited to approximately 30 cm.
At a distance of 30 cm, the participants recognized happiness best (it was recognized by all participants without exception), and indifference was worst of all.
The situation changed at a distance of 120 cm: then adults began to recognize anger best of all, surprise – worst of all.
“It is important to remember that we were only investigating at what distance the child can see something, and not understand what it is,” notes Magnussen. He is sincerely surprised that no one before them has used the detailed information available to all about the visual perception of babies. Therefore, a team of Scandinavian scientists were the first to assess the visual information available to a newborn baby.
Scientists are excited to finally realize an idea they have shelved for 15 years. However, they leave the task of further developing their results to other researchers.
90,000 Vision in babies: the formation of the visual system after birth.
Your heart skips with happiness when your newborn baby first opens his eyes and looks at you.
Don’t worry if it doesn’t happen right away.In newborns, the visual system forms gradually.
In the very first week of life, a child sees the world differently: indistinctly and in shades of gray.
Only a few months after birth will the baby’s visual system be fully functional. Knowing the key stages in the development of the organs of vision in a newborn baby (and how to contribute to this), you can understand that your baby is developing normally and enjoying life.
Baby’s eye development begins during pregnancy
Your baby’s visual system begins to develop before birth.Therefore, the way you take care of yourself and your body during pregnancy is important and affects the development of the baby’s body and mental abilities, including the eyes and visual centers in the brain.
Be sure to follow your healthcare provider’s dietary recommendations. Be sure to take prescribed supplements and vitamins, and get enough rest.
During pregnancy, you should not smoke or drink alcohol, as toxins can cause numerous health problems for your baby, in particular, vision problems.
Smoking is especially dangerous during pregnancy. Cigarette smoke contains about 3,000 different chemicals (such as carbon monoxide or carbon monoxide) that can harm humans.
Even regular aspirin can be dangerous: its use increases the risk of having a low birth weight baby and complications during childbirth. Low body weight, in turn, can contribute to vision problems.
Always check with your healthcare professional before taking any medication during pregnancy.This also applies to over-the-counter drugs, herbal supplements, and other over-the-counter medications.
Visual Condition at Birth
Shortly after birth, your pediatrician or neonatologist will examine your baby’s eyes for congenital cataracts or other serious neonatal eye diseases in newborns.
Despite the fact that such diseases are rather the exception, it is better to detect them and begin to treat them at an early stage in order to reduce the pathological impact on the development of the infant’s visual system.
To protect the baby’s eyes from pathogenic bacteria and microorganisms that could enter them during passage through the birth canal and cause eye infections , an antibiotic ointment is placed in them. Early prevention of possible eye infections is very important for the normal development of the visual system.
DO YOU ARE WORRY OF YOUR KID’S VISION? Find an optometrist nearby .
At birth, your baby sees objects only in black and white and in shades of gray.This is due to the fact that the nerve cells in the retina and brain, which are responsible for color perception, are not yet fully developed.
The newborn baby is still unable to focus on nearby objects (accommodation disorder). Don’t worry if you notice that your little one is unable to “focus” their vision on objects or on your face. It will take time for him to acquire this ability.
Despite all these features, studies have shown that just a few days after birth, the baby is able to distinguish the face of the mother from the face of a stranger.
Scientists believe that the baby recognizes the mother’s face thanks to the contrasting hairline. (During the study, women covered their hair with a scarf or swimming cap, and the child could not distinguish between the mother’s face and the face of a stranger.)
Therefore, to stimulate eye contact, during the first weeks of the child’s life, it is not necessary to change the hairstyle or appearance.
You can also notice that babies have rather large eyes. This is because usually a child’s head grows first, and then the rest of the body.At birth, a baby’s eyes are 65% of the size of an adult’s!
The eyes of a child in the first month of life
In the first month of life, the eyes of a child are not highly sensitive to light. By the way, for a child who is 1 month old to understand that the room is light (threshold of sensitivity to light), the light must be 50 times brighter than normal.
Do not be afraid to leave the light in the nursery, because it will not disturb the child’s sleep, and it will allow you not to trip over the furniture when you go to visit him at night!
Very quickly the baby acquires the ability to distinguish colors.A week after birth, the baby can see red, orange, yellow, and green. A little later, he will be able to distinguish between blue and purple. This is because blue light is the shortest wavelength, and there is only one type of receptor in the retina that can “see” blue light.
Don’t worry if you notice that your baby’s eyes are looking in different directions. One eye can sometimes be slightly averted to one side or the other. This is fine. But if your baby’s eyes are slanting strongly to the side, immediately consult an optometrist.
Tips: Paint your baby’s room in bright, fun colors to stimulate their eyesight. Furniture or interior details should be of contrasting colors and shapes. Hang a bright, colorful hanging element above or next to the crib. It is important that it be multi-colored and consist of different geometric shapes.
Development of the organs of vision: 2nd and 3rd months of life
In the second and third months of life, significant changes take place in the baby’s visual system. During this period, visual acuity rises, , functional strabismus (if any) disappears.Now your child is able to follow moving objects and tries to fix their eyes on them.
A bright, bright room with many colors and shapes to help stimulate the development of your baby’s vision.
Moreover, the baby learns to move his gaze from one object to another only with his eyes, without moving his head. Also, the child’s eyes become more sensitive to light: at the age of 3 months, the threshold for light sensitivity decreases. Therefore, during sleep, the lights should be dimmed.
Tips: To stimulate your baby’s vision at 2–3 months of age:
Add new objects to the room or reposition them frequently to enrich your baby’s experience.
Leave the night light on to stimulate vision when the baby is awake in the crib.
During sleep, the baby should be placed on its back to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). However, when your toddler is awake and supervised, lay him on his tummy.This pose stimulates the development of visual perception and motor skills.
Development of the organs of vision: Months 4–6
By 6 months, the visual centers of the baby’s brain are quite well developed. The child sees more clearly and can follow moving objects by making quick and precise eye movements.
Visual acuity increases from approximately 20/400 (6/120) at birth to 20/25 (6 / 7.5) at 6 months. Color perception reaches the adult level; the child can distinguish all the colors of the rainbow.
At the age of 4–6 months, the child’s hand-eye coordination becomes more perfect, which allows him to quickly find and take objects with his hands, as well as accurately direct the bottle (and not only!) Into the mouth.
Six months is an important stage in life, because it is at this time that you should carry out the first prophylactic examination of your baby’s eyes.
If necessary, the child will be examined by a qualified ophthalmologist at the age of 6 months. However, routine eye examinations are usually recommended after reaching kindergarten age (3-4 years and older).
If you have any concerns, you can also consult your doctor who will give you further advice.
Consult an ophthalmologist who specializes in children’s vision and vision development for a thorough eye examination of your 6 months old.
Development of the organs of vision: Months 7-12
Your baby now moves a lot, crawls and overcomes such a distance that you never dreamed of. He estimates the distance to objects better, more accurately grabs and throws them.(Caution!)
This is an important period in your child’s development. At this stage, the baby has a better sense of his whole body and learns to coordinate vision and movement.
Now you have to pay more attention to your baby to keep him out of danger. Lumps, bruises, eye injuries and other serious injuries are common when the toddler is exploring the world around him.
Lock cabinets with household chemicals, put special fences in front of the stairs.
Don’t worry if your baby’s eyes start to change color.Most babies are born with blue eyes because there are not enough dark pigments in the iris at birth. Over time, there will be many more, so your baby’s eyes may change color from blue to brown, green, gray, or become swampy.
Tips: To stimulate your child’s hand-eye coordination, you can lie down with him on the floor and invite him to crawl to an object. Put your baby’s favorite toy away and invite him to get to it.You can also offer to disassemble and collect various items and toys.
Pay close attention to how your child’s eyes move – together or separately. Strabismus is a term for a misalignment of the eyes. It is very important to identify and treat it early so that your child’s vision develops properly.
If untreated, strabismus can lead to amblyopia or “lazy eye”.”
It may take months for a baby to achieve joint eye movement. But if you notice that one of your baby’s eyes is squinting or moving apart from the other, see an ophthalmologist urgently.
Vision problems in premature babies
The average duration of a normal pregnancy is approximately 40 weeks (280 days) According to the WHO, a baby is considered premature if it is less than 37 weeks old
Compared to full-term babies, premature babies are at greater risk of developing pathologies of the organs of vision.And the shorter the period, the more serious the complication.
The following vision problems associated with preterm birth are characteristic:
Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP)
This is a disease in which fibrous changes and blood vessels develop in the thickness and on the surface of the retina. ROP is often accompanied by retinal scarring, poor vision and retinal detachment . In severe cases, retinopathy of prematurity can lead to blindness.
All premature babies are at risk of ROP.Extremely low birth weight is an additional risk factor, especially in cases where the baby is placed immediately after birth in an incubator with a high oxygen concentration.
If your baby was born prematurely, ask the midwife for a referral to a pediatric ophthalmologist for an eye exam to rule out ROP.
These are involuntary oscillatory movements of the eyes.
In most cases nystagmus manifests itself in the form of involuntary eye movements in different directions, with different frequency and amplitude of “oscillation”.Oscillations of the eyes are pendulum in nature, horizontal, diagonal and rotational movements are observed.
Nystagmus is congenital or may develop after a few weeks or months. Risk factors include optic nerve hypoplasia, albinism, and congenital cataracts. By the amplitude of eye vibrations, you can determine how badly the baby’s visual system is damaged.
If your child shows signs of nystagmus, consult an eye doctor immediately.
Remember that smoking during pregnancy significantly increases the likelihood of premature birth.
Page published in November 2020
Page updated April 2021
90,000 Infant’s first feces contain information about future allergies
A child’s first chair (which, by the way, is called the beautiful word meconium) can tell surprisingly much about his future health. For example, about whether an infant will develop allergies during the first year of life.
Meconium consists of epithelial cells, amniotic fluid, mucus, bile and water digested by a child while still in the womb.It does not at all look like ordinary feces: viscous meconium of a dark swamp color is usually excreted from the body during the first days of a baby’s life.
“Meconium is like a time capsule showing how the infant was exposed before birth. It contains molecules of a wide variety of substances obtained in the womb from the mother, and they become food for the first bacteria that inhabit the intestines of the newborn,” explains the lead author of the recent work, Dr. Charisse Petersen of the University of British Columbia in Canada.
Researchers analyzed samples of meconium from 100 babies and found that the fewer molecules of various substances it contains, the higher the child’s risk of developing allergies during the first year of life.
Scientists have also found that reducing the number of molecules of certain substances changes the composition of the beneficial gut microbiota of the infant. Recall that the bacterial community in the gut, called the microbiota, plays an important role in protecting the body from disease.
Using machine learning algorithms, the researchers were able to predict with an accuracy of 76% the risk of an allergy in a child during the first year of life. To do this, scientists have combined data on the composition of meconium, microbiota and other clinical data of newborns.
According to the authors of the work, today it is the most accurate test to determine the risk of allergies in the future.
It turns out that now researchers and doctors have a tool with which it will be possible to carefully monitor the health of children at high risk of developing allergies.
In addition, this work expands the understanding of scientists about how strongly the immunity and state of the microbiota of an infant depend on the variety of substances that he encountered in the womb.
A Canadian study was published in Cell Reports Medicine.
Earlier, we wrote about how gut bacteria caused mice to leave their offspring, as well as how diet in childhood affects human health in the future.
You can find more of the most advanced news from the world of science and medicine in the section “ Science ” and “Medicine” on the media platform “ Watching “.
90,000 Early speech development in young children
“… in the community, under the guidance, with the help, the child can always do more and solve the most difficult problems than on his own.” A.V. Zaporozhets, a famous Russian psychologist.
I would like to draw the attention of parents to a very important period in the development of the baby, which we call “pre-speech”. It is during this period that the baby prepares for further speech development, which is not yet noticeable, but is already very active.From my many years of experience, I know that many mothers pay little attention to the babbling and babbling of the baby, many do not even know what it is and how they differ.
But the first symptoms of trouble can manifest themselves precisely during this period, when the child’s nervous system is still very plastic and malleable to therapeutic effects. You should also not make preliminary diagnoses, because we are adults too, very different. Someone is talkative, someone is called “silent”, one cannot live without communication, and the other likes to be alone.And the children are ours and they are, of course, similar to us. Along with the norm, I give examples that, in combination with other symptoms, should alert parents.
Often there is nothing serious behind these symptoms, only a small correction is needed. Mothers come to my appointment with perfectly healthy children, who had peculiarities of babbling and humming. Yes, not everyone who had deviations in pre-speech development then developed problems with speech and reading, very often everything returned to normal. But all children with speech difficulties necessarily had early speech and pre-speech development disorders.
Stages of pre-speech development
- The first year of life is called the period of pre-speech development, during which there is preparation for mastering speech. From the very first day of life, the child prepares for speech. From the moment of birth, there are vocal reactions – screaming and crying. With these signals, the baby reports that he is feeling bad, he is hungry, sick. A healthy newborn makes separate sounds, in between “a” and “e”.
- Attention should be paid if the baby sobs with a sigh, with a characteristic nasal tinge, or a piercing, painful, continuous cry, which is commonly called “cerebral”, is noted.If these symptoms persist, you should consult a specialist.
- Gradually the child learns to listen attentively to his speech and the speech of others. From the 1st month, the baby calms down when he hears a lullaby. An increased interest in human speech in the form of a concentration reaction appears at 4 to 5 weeks. When an adult bends over the child, speaks to him affectionately, he stops crying and moving, “listens”. At 5-8 weeks, in response to the speech of an adult, the child smiles, from 8 weeks – a real smile, by 9-12 weeks laughter appears.Starting from 6-8 weeks, in response to an adult’s attempt to make contact, the baby utters separate sounds – a hum (initial hum). True humming or melodious humming appears in the 2-3rd month. The child, being in a calm state, publishes lingering vowel sounds.
- With certain pathologies of the nervous system, the child may not show interest in the speech of an adult, not react to surrounding objects. In children, in such cases, negative reactions usually prevail (monotonous crying, prolonged screaming in one tone), a smile is extremely rare, and there is no hum.
- By 5-6 months, the nature of the sounds becomes more complicated. Combinations appear: “baaa, maaa”, “taaa, paaa”. Observing the child, it can be noted that at the moment of pronouncing sounds, he slows down his vocal movements, as if listening and imitating himself, utters sounds in the form of chains. By about the 5th month of life, sound and syllable pronunciation begin to acquire some semblance of words. By 5-6 months, humming gradually turns into clear and distinct speech sounds, babbling appears.The first babble consists of short chains of syllables: ba-ba-ba, ma-ma-ma. Parents sometimes take such babbling chains for meaningful speech, but these, of course, are not yet words.
- Children with a lack of humming, low expressiveness of speech, and a lack of imitation deserve special observation. A child with the initial signs of early childhood autism may be clearly non-contact, passive, orienting reactions will be reduced, or, conversely, motor activity, anxiety, negative emotional reactions to new objects (crying, screaming) will prevail.
- By the age of 9 months, babbling is enriched with new sounds, intonations, develops into long rows of syllables. Babbling becomes a constant response to the voice of an adult and accompanies various actions with objects and toys. At 9 months, the child demonstrates understanding of the speech addressed to him, reacts to his own name, perceives some simple verbal instructions and responds to them with an action: “open your mouth”, “give a pen”, press their cheeks to the mother when asked for “kiss mom”, raise their head and the eyes to the lamp when asked “where is the light?”n. For children 9-10 months old is characterized by active babbling, consisting of 4 – 5 syllables or more. The child repeats new syllables after adults, which he himself had not pronounced before, copies intonation well, accompanying it with expressive facial expressions and gestures. By the age of 9-10 months, he pronounces separate words consisting of the same paired syllables (mom, dad).
- A child of 11-12 months more and more often pays attention to the speaker’s face, starts nodding his head in a sign of approval and shaking it in a sign of denial. The syllables that go into babbling become constituent parts of the words: ma-ma-ma – “mama”.The kid begins to designate certain objects with sound combinations for example: car – “BBC”, etc. At the same time, children of this age usually show a new interest – looking at books with pictures. Recognizing familiar objects in pictures or showing them at the request of an adult, children designate them with babbling words.
- By the year, the dictionary usually reaches 8-10, and sometimes more “words” (baba, kitty, mu, be, etc.) that have a specific meaning. By the age of 1, the child understands and follows 5-10 simple instructions: “bring this and that,” “close the door,” “give me a cup,” etc.Thus, in the first year of life, the child prepares the speech apparatus for the pronunciation of sounds. At the same time, there is an active process of developing understanding of speech.
What to do for mom
“Infecting” the baby with positive emotions, the mother stimulates his interest in the outside world, and since the satisfaction of this interest is associated with the waste of physiological resources, she stimulates in a certain direction both metabolic processes and tissue differentiation in her baby’s body.On the contrary, by transmitting negative emotions to the baby, we suppress not only his interest in the external world, but also certain biological processes of his body. It is no better when the adults around the child “infect” him with too strong affective emotions.
These energetic emotions drain the child’s nervous system and can lead to physical illness. The adult’s mechanical fulfillment of regime moments, his indifferent, indifferent attitude towards a small child excludes the possibility of any kind of emotional contact whatsoever.With such an adult, the child does not have a need for communication, and therefore the cognitive experience does not develop and the necessary communicative and cognitive means are not formed. There is a threat of mental retardation and disorders of further interaction between the child and the adult. The child’s brain develops incorrectly or is delayed, in the absence or deficiency of external stimuli.
And, conversely, interest in an adult, curiosity about the external world and communicative-cognitive activity are evoked and supported, as we have seen, by positive emotions emanating from the adult.Therefore, we can repeat once again that for infancy, emotional communication between a child and an adult is not a luxury, but a primary necessity, a condition for the formation of his psyche according to a human social type. Depriving an infant of the emotional attention of an adult leads at this early age, first of all, to an abnormal development of the child’s personality.
If the parents notice the trouble, and this is not one symptom, but several (lack of babbling, humming, change in voice, behavior), then you should contact a specialist.And then, along with speech therapy correction (massage, articulatory gymnastics, stimulation of voice reactions), drug treatment, physiotherapy, etc. are prescribed.
How to stimulate speech development
The sooner a problem in the development of a child’s speech is noticed and the earlier specialists begin to work with him, the better the results will be achieved: the reserve capacities of the brain are especially high at an early age, during the period when speech is actively developing.
At the stage of pre-speech development (1-3 months.) it is necessary to stimulate motor and communicative functions, develop and consolidate the child’s need for communication with adults, consolidate the ability to fix the gaze and track a moving object. Gradually move on to actively stimulate fine motor skills. In the absence of humming at this stage, violation of voice reactions, the doctor may prescribe, along with the use of drug therapy, speech therapy correction (face massage, respiratory and articulatory gymnastics).At the 3rd stage of pre-speech development (3-6 months), the baby manipulates toys, pulls them into his mouth, turns over and crawls to the object that interested him, throws toys and monitors their movement. In cases where there is a delay in pre-speech skills, it is advisable to conduct targeted stimulation. For example, create situations that cause a child to laugh, hum, as an imitation reaction. If necessary, speech therapy correction can consist of active speech therapy massage, activities aimed at developing babbling.At the 4th stage (6-9 months) and 5th stage (9-12 months), the possibilities of speech therapy help expand.
Along with active massage and gymnastics, they begin to stimulate tongue movements, chewing movements, lip movements. They stimulate the ability to recognize the intonation coloring of addressed speech. Stimulation of babbling and initial syllable formation is carried out with the help of appropriate imitative or imitation games (“Ladushki”, “Goodbye”, “Geese flew – sat on the head ..”, etc.) The effectiveness of speech therapy correction of pre-speech disorders cannot be carried out without active stimulation of mental development.After 6 months, the child is stimulated with purposeful actions with various objects, stimulation of repeated actions, object-effective communication with adults. From the second half of the year, the child is taught to handle objects, to manipulate them.
- One can judge the pronunciation of a child’s speech only when he has accumulated a significant vocabulary. The time and order of the appearance of sounds in different children are not the same. In the third year of life, a child has the right to incorrect pronunciation.So, sibilant sounds (S, Z, Z ‘, C), hissing (W, W, Ch, Sh) and sonorous (R, R’, L), he usually skips or replaces (S-S ‘; Z-S’ , V; Ts-T ‘; Sh-S’, T ‘; Zh-S’, D ‘; Ch-T’; Sh-T ‘; R-L’; R’-L ‘; L-L’)
- If any violations of the pronunciation side of speech are found in infants, it requires timely corrective measures, additional examinations from other specialists. The prospects for mental development, the success of teaching children with disabilities in neuropsychic development, their school and social adaptation depend on the early detection of impairments in cognitive activity.But often speech therapists in the polyclinic advise to wait a little – “before 5 years and do not come.” This can be explained by the fact that classes with a baby require a special individual approach, and not every specialist has the necessary knowledge, experience, and most importantly, the desire to deal with young children. But a good speech therapist won’t shrug off anxious parents.
- In the absence of active speech in a child 1.5-3 years old, it is necessary to arrange an appointment for a consultation with competent specialists: a neurologist, psychologist, speech therapist, otorhinolaryngologist, to conduct a number of diagnostic studies.Parents should be alarmed by speech delays, not only when the child has no speech at two years old, but also in cases where development is delayed or there is a complete absence of humming and babbling. Observations of specialists and objective data of medical research will clarify the nature of the violation, the degree of its complexity, suggest possible causes of its occurrence and organize adequate assistance to the child.
- At any age, speech disorders limit cognitive activity and the possibilities of social adaptation of a person.Consultations of competent specialists and correctional sessions with speech therapists, defectologists will help to distinguish speech disorders from other disorders (mental retardation, mental retardation, hearing impairment, autism spectrum disorders), and to make a more accurate diagnosis. Early correction, systematic speech therapy sessions, which in their essence are a well-organized game, can completely compensate for a speech defect.
- The importance of speech development at an early age is great: speech, along with intelligence, is an important indicator of the development of a baby, and its violation is evidence of a problem in the mental sphere.Speech reflects the success (or failure) of mastering the native language – the main social acquisition of the child during this period.
- The speech of a young child reflects the development and lays the foundations for future higher mental functions: memory, attention, thinking, and therefore all further education of the child, and ultimately his social adaptation and success. That is why, in corrective and developmental work with young children, special attention is paid to the stimulation (formation) of speech activity.
About the organization of classes
The development of a child’s speech occurs at every moment of his life. Everyday situations, including getting ready for bed, washing, eating, take place in almost the same conditions. This helps to enrich children’s vocabulary and strengthen their speech skills. Addressing children for a variety of reasons creates a need for communication in them. At the same time, it is necessary to actively use play and everyday situations pleasant for the child. For example, when washing or bathing a child, you can hum a song composed on the go, drawing the child’s attention to the parts of the body and face about which it is sung with a gentle touch:
- Where, where, where, where, where, where are our pens? (2 times)
- Here they are, here they are, here are our pens.(2 times)
- Where, where, where, where, where, where are our legs? (2 times)
- Here they are, here they are, here are our legs. (2 times)
- Where, where, where, where, where, where is our tummy? (2 times)
- Here it is, here it is, here is our tummy. (2 times)
- Where, where, where, where, where, where are our eyes? (2 times)
- Here they are, here they are, here are our eyes. (2 times)
- Where, where, where, where, where, where are our cheeks? (2 times)
- Here they are, here they are, here are our cheeks.(2 times)
A gentle mother’s voice, pleasant stroking movements will stimulate the child’s independent vocal responses.
Just communication with a baby in everyday life is not enough for his development. It is necessary to use speech in substantive and game activity. It is also advisable to conduct specially organized classes (games-classes). It is important to take into account that at an early age, all tasks that are given to a child should be offered as an entertaining and interesting game.Only on a positive emotional background will the baby himself want to pronounce a new word, repeat the combination of sounds or phrase he hears.
When learning new words, you should always use a toy or object first, and then a picture.