It can be difficult to tell what is and is not normal for a newborn baby, especially for new parents. How can I know whether my child is developing normally? To what extent does this or warrant a trip to the doctor? It's both thrilling and exhausting to bring a newborn home for the first time. You and your baby are already in the process of becoming acquainted with one another and learning to recognise one another's unique behaviours.
There have been plenty of activities for a newborn to do in between being really quiet and extremely alert. Shop for all of your baby needs at My Baby Nursery.
You can now prepare for the arrival of your new baby with reasonable expectations and a sense of calm thanks to the advice provided here.
What Should We Expect?
In most situations, the first day or so following birth is characterised by a calm alertness in the newborn. It's the perfect time to spend time with your newborn and begin developing a bond. Even if you can't meet your newborn right away, you'll still have plenty of time to bond with him or her in the future.
During the first few weeks, you may observe that your baby spends a lot of time with his or her hands clenched, elbows bent, the hips and knees bent, and arms and legs held near to the front of his or her body. There are parallels between this and the foetal position adopted by a pregnant woman in her final weeks.
Premature babies often look and act differently from term babies in a variety of ways.
The head of the newborn is the first body part to emerge through to the birth canal, making it vulnerable to injury.
The skull of a newborn is composed of many bones so that the massive head may fit through the small opening of the birth canal without injuring the mother or the infant.
Molding, or the shifting and overlapping of the skull bones, can give a newborn baby born via vaginal delivery a more extended, stretched, or even pointed appearance to the crown of their head. Over the next few days, when the skull bones shift into a more spherical structure, this peculiar appearance will fade away.
Most kids whose heads were delivered through c - sections or breech position do not have any evidence of moulding.
Newborns have two data relating, or soft areas, on the tops of their heads because the skull bones have not fused together.
The larger one is shaped like a diamond and can be anywhere from one to three inches in width; it sits on the front of the head.
Further back on the forehead, for which a beanie may well be worn, is a smaller, triangular fontanel.
Don't worry if you see that your baby's fontanels appear to fluctuate in time with his or her heartbeat or bulge out when he or she cries or strains.
This is to be expected. As the skull bones fuse together, the fontanels will fade away; the front one typically disappears between 12 and 18 months of age, while the back one does so between 6 and 12 months.
A baby's head could have a few bumps and look stretched from the strain of birth.
The caput succedaneum is a swollen, bruised area of the scalp that typically forms at the rear of the skull and guides the baby as he or she makes their way through the cervical canal. Over the next few days, this should subside.
Blood that has gathered under the skull's outer membrane is called a cephalohematoma.
When the baby's head presses down on the mum's pelvic bones during birth, this can happen.
In contrast to capita incomes succedaneum, the bump on the baby's head is localised to one side and may take a month or two to completely go away.
Cephalohematoma infants may experience milder jaundice than other newborns during their first week of life as a result of the blood accumulated in the hematoma.
Because of the accumulation of fluid and the trauma of birth, a newborn's face might appear quite swollen. The face of a newborn baby can undergo dramatic transformations in the first few days following birth as the youngster sheds postpartum fluid and recovers from the physical and emotional stress of birth.
That's why the pictures you snap of your kid at home later won't look anything like the ones you took in the "new arrival" nursery.
It is possible for a newborn's facial expressions to be completely deformed as a result of their location in the uterus and the pressure experienced during delivery.
Don't worry, your squished ear, flattened forehead, or crooked jaw will likely correct itself in time.
Most newborns change their views and begin to explore their surroundings just minutes after birth. They can see, but newborns probably can't focus very well for the first few months of their lives; this is why the eyes of a newborn may appear to be crossed or even out of alignment.
Some toddlers may not be able to unlock their eyes widely at first because of the puffy of their eyelids.
The "doll's eye" reaction occurs more frequently when a baby is held upright, therefore this is a good position to hold your infant in to stimulate eye opening. Sometimes, the whites of a newborn baby's eyes will seem red.
When blood seeps under the conjunctiva during delivery, the condition is called subconjunctival haemorrhage. It's just like a skin bruise; it goes away on its own after a few days, and it doesn't mean anything bad happened to the baby's eyes.
Many expectant parents wonder if they can predict their child's eye colour. A newborn born with brown eyes will always have brown eyes.
Most babies of colour and babies of Asian descent experience this.
Blue-grey eyes are the norm for newborn white babies. However, iris pigmentation can change over time, usually not achieving its final colour until 3–6 months of birth.
The position a baby was in while still within the womb can have lasting effects on the shape of their ears and other features. Ears may appear briefly folded or deformed in a newborn because the baby lacks the dense cartilage that gives the ears of an older child their strong shape.
Also prevalent are little skin tags or pits on the side of the face in front of the ear. As a rule, skin tags are a simple cosmetic issue to remedy.
Small amounts little nasal fluid or mucus might cause a baby to sniff or sound congestion although when they may not have a cold or other illness because of the narrowness of their nasal passages. When required, your doctor may have you use a bulb syringe and saltwater nose drops to flush out your system.
Additionally, infants frequently sneeze. This is a natural response that has nothing to do with an infection, allergens, or any other medical condition.
Minor white spots mostly on upper jaw, generally in the centre, may be visible when your infant opens him or her lips to yawn or cry.
These little clusters of cells are called Epstein's beads and, along with liquid cyst sometimes visible on the gums, will dissolve throughout the first few weeks.
In a word, yes. Newborns typically have a disproportionately short neck because it is obscured by their squishy cheeks and loose skin.
A baby's heartbeat can be easily felt or seen since the chest wall is so delicate. This is perfectly normal and should not be cause for alarm.
Moreover, breast growth is possible for both male and female neonates. As a result of the mother's oestrogen levels, the foetus develops female characteristics.
A little amount of milk fluid may occasionally be produced from the nipples, and you may feel solid, disc-shaped mounds of so be the nipples.
Most women lose their breast-enlarging effects within the first weeks.
Despite what a few parents may think, squeezing the breast tissue won't speed up the natural process of breast reduction.
Arms and Legs
Newborns, especially those born at full term, have a tendency to adopt a position after birth that is similar to how they were positioned in the confined uterus, with their hands and legs flexed and kept close to young bodies.
The hands are likely to be clasped shut, and you may have trouble opening them due of the intense grasping reflex that is triggered by touching or inserting an object there in palms.
When newborns hold their hands up to their faces, their lengthy fingernails might irritate their skin.
If that's the case, a pair of tiny scissors can be used to safely and effectively clip your baby's nails.
Newborns' bent feet and legs are a cause for anxiety for some parents.
However, this is to be expected given the typical position of the developing foetus during the final few months of pregnancy: hips flexed, knees bent, and legs and feet crossed snugly up against the tummy.
Newborns' feet and legs can be positioned for walking, and the process of learning to walk, bear weight, and develop normally occurs over the first two to three years of life
A baby's tummy will often look round and plump as they grow. Additionally, you may notice that the skin over the central portion of the abdomen protrudes between the strips of muscular tissue making up the abdominal wall on the opposite side when your baby cries or strains.
As the baby develops during the next few months, this usually goes away. Concerns regarding the look and proper treatment of the umbilical cord are common among parents.
There are three blood vessels in total in the cord, all of which are wrapped in a jelly-like material. When the baby is delivered, the umbilical cord is either clamped or wrapped off before being cut.
It is then customary to wait for the umbilical stump to naturally fall out after a period of time (often 10–3 weeks).
Until the cord falls out and the stump dries up, you may be encouraged to swab the area with alcohol frequently or wash it with soap and warm water if the stump becomes unclean or sticky to help avoid infection.
The baby shouldn't have their belly button submerged in water until this happens. It is common for the withering chord to change colour from yellow to brown or black. If your baby's navel becomes red, or if a bad smell or discharge begins to appear, you should take him to the doctor.
African-American newborns are disproportionately affected with umbilical (navel) hernias.
The infant's intestine can protrude through the umbilical connector navel hole in the abdominal wall and push the skin to the outside when the newborn cries or strains.
In most cases, infants with these hernias don't experience any discomfort. The vast majority of hernias heal on their own within several years, but if yours hasn't by then, a simple surgical operation should do the trick.
Umbilical hernias are not treatable with the strapping and taping of coins over the affected area, or any of the other home cures that have tried over the years.
These methods are inefficient and could cause infections or other harm to the skin.
Male and female newborns may have enlarged genitalia due to hormonal changes. Why? It's caused by various things, including the mother's and the fetus's exposure to hormones, the birth trauma that causes bruise and swelling of both the genital tissues, and the normal progression of genital development.
At delivery, a girl's outer vaginal lips may look swollen. Labial skin can be smooth or wrinkled, depending on the individual.
A hymenal tag, a tiny bit of pink tissue that occasionally protrudes between the labia, is completely harmless and will eventually disappear into the lady parts as the genitalia develop.
Most newborn girls experience an incontinence of mucus and maybe some blood for a few days after birth, a side effect of maternal hormones.
When the oestrogen a mother has passed on to her child begins to wane, the child may experience what is known as a "mini-period," which is similar to a regular menstrual period.
When an infant girl experiences swelling in her groyne, it may be a sign of an inguinal (groyne) hernia, which occurs more frequently in boys.
There's little room for debate about the phrase's etymology when used to describe someone who lacks experience. Amniotic fluid and sometimes even blood are among the fluids that cover a newborn upon birth.
It is imperative that the newborn be dried off as soon as possible after birth to prevent a dip in body temperature. Additionally, newborns are covered with a thick, white substance called vernix caseosa, which will be wiped off during the first bath.
Some new parents may be shocked by the surprising colour and pattern of their baby's skin.
Because blood circulation is usually unstable near the skin's surface, a mottled pattern of resurface and pale spots is to be expected when the skin is mottle.
Acrocyanosis, or bluishness of the skin of the fingers and toes and the area around the lips, is another common sign of stress in infants.
A baby's skin may temporarily look beetroot red or bluish-purple when he or she is crying or has a bowel movement.
You should expect your face and other portions of your body to be covered in red marks, bruises, bruises, and petechiae.
They result from the stress of being delivered. Within the first couple of weeks of life, these will have healed and faded away. Baby boys and girls may have lanugo, a fine, downy fuzz, on their faces, shoulders, and backs.
Infants born preterm are more likely to have lanugo because much of this hair is normally lost in the pregnancy before delivery. In any event, you'll be hair-free in a matter of weeks.
During the first two weeks of a baby's life, the upper layer of skin will begin to peel off. This is very typical and doesn't call for any special care. Some newborns, especially those born after their due date, may have peeling skin.
What Behaviors Can I Expect from My Baby?
It's possible that many new parents are unaware of what constitutes "normal" behaviour for a newborn. Though infants progress at various speeds, many of their behaviours are similar.
If your infant seems to be falling behind, don't panic. New parents need to be aware of typical infant behaviour so that they can recognise any deviations as early as possible.
Don't judge your premature baby's progress against that of full-term infants.
Babies born prematurely typically lag behind their full-term peers in terms of development. Your infant may be 2 years behind a full-term infant if he or she was born prematurely.
Your preemie infant will be monitored by a doctor to see how they progress. If you're concerned that your child's growth is especially slow, it's important to seek medical attention.
Depending on the baby, newborns may sleep anywhere from 20 seconds to four hrs per day, or as much as 20 hours per day.
They have to be fed every so often hours because their tiny stomachs can't hold much food. We have a wide variety of high-quality baby blankets, perfect for keeping your newborn warm and cosy all day and night long.
At three months of age, most newborns sleep between six and eight hours per night.
Babies often cry for long periods of time at first. It's how they let you know they're in trouble or need help. A newborn baby cries when it:
- Feelings of: hunger and exhaustion
- have temperatures that are too low or high
- In need of a change of diapers and some reassuring words
- Get a load of this gas
- suffer from overstimulation and illness
Babies often gurgle, hiccup, sneeze, yawn, and spit up shortly after birth. Newborns often wail for no apparent reason. When this occurs, soothing your baby by swaying, singing, whispering, or swaddling him or her can help. Your baby's cries will soon serve as a guide to his or her requirements.
Sometimes, you just won't be able to soothe your newborn. You are not to blame for this. When your newborn won't stop wailing, try to keep your cool and your patience.
Have someone else take care of the infant if you really need some time apart from him or her. You should never shake your infant.
Shaken baby syndrome is a condition where serious brain damage is caused by shaking an infant, which can lead to permanent disability.
If your newborn is wailing more than normal, at odd hours, or in an unusual way, you should call a doctor. If your newborn exhibits these symptoms, it may be because they are unwell.
Primitive reflexes are the inborn reactions of an infant to external stimuli like light or touch, and they fade away as the child develops.
The newborn stays in the same position it was in while in the womb throughout the first few weeks of life:
- Hands balled into fists
- A slouched posture with bowed extremities
- Pose with your arms and legs tucked in front of you.
As soon as your baby gains control of his or her movements, this will stop being the case.
Multiple reflexes are present at birth in infants. Learning about these reflexes can shed light on the origin of some of her newborn's actions. These are some of the reflexes that babies have when they're born:
- A newborn's first instinct is to face the source of nourishment and begin sucking thanks to the rooting reflex. This is the effect of gently stroking the cheek of a newborn.
- Babies have a natural inclination to start sucking on whatever is put into their mouths, known as the sucking reflex.
- Baby's startle response: flailing arms and legs, followed by a tightening of the body. Oftentimes, this reaction involves shedding tears.
- A infant with the tonic neck reflex will swivel their head and hold out the same arm.
- The infant's fingers automatically curl around whatever is in the baby's palm, a reflex known as the "grasp reflex."
- When a newborn is held up straight and his or her feet are contacting a hard surface, a reaction known as the "stepping reflex" causes the infant to move his or her feet in an imitation of a stepping motion. Sometimes when a baby is upset, their arms, legs, and chin will shake. The reason for this is that a newborn's neurological system is still immature.
It's normal for babies to have trouble breathing at first. After this period of time (often between 5 and 10 seconds), the newborn will resume normal breathing and functioning.
Nothing unusual here. If your baby stops breathing for more than 10 seconds or turns blue, however, you should contact your doctor or go to the emergency department immediately.
Even though infants have the ability to see, they may have crossed eyes since focusing is so difficult at first. Even at such a young age, infants have the ability to discern motion and the difference between dark and light. In the first few months, it is easier for them to take a sideways look at things.
By the time they are 2 or 3 months old, newborns have developed sufficient control over their eye muscles to maintain a single-pointed gaze. Their eyes are also capable of tracking moving targets.
Even very young infants show a precocious ability to discriminate between various sounds. Babies develop a sense of security when they hear your voice.
Baby may start to gravitate towards you when you speak to them. The varied tones and rhythms of the language make it sound like music to infants.
Should You Worry?
That whenever a baby enters the world, it can bring a lot of anxiety to the lives of the parents. Because, after all, newborns appear weak and defenceless.
Aside from their piercing cries, babies have no other obvious means of communicating their demands.
Having some apprehensions about providing for them is just reasonable. Here are some of the most often asked questions by parents, along with reassuring responses from medical professionals.
My infant has crossed eyes and red spots in them. Why Should I Worry?
It's typical for newborns to cross her eyes, at even six months, periodically. In any case, consult your child's paediatrician if you notice that your child's eyes are permanently crooked.
Spots of red are also common. Because of the intense pressure the newborn endures during delivery, these defects are readily obvious.
Spots like these are harmless and may fade disappear within a few weeks, but you should still notify your paediatrician if your newborn did not have them at birth and suddenly developed them. They may be symptomatic of an infection.
Can I Expect My Baby to Have Swollen Breasts and Genitalia?
Hormone exposure is a possible cause of enlarged breasts in both males and females, which might result in milk production.
Since this is the case, a girl infant may also experience some swelling in her labia and a light crimson discharge. If it's a small area and doesn't spread, it's fine. Hydrocele, but at the other hand, can cause swelling in a boy's testicles and genital area. The scrotum seems larger due to this fluid-filled sac that surrounds the testicles.
There is an increased risk of hydroceles in premature infants, and the condition can be inherited, but any newborn boy is at risk.
Hydroceles typically heal on their own within the year, but surgery may be required in rare cases. Any swelling, especially if there is a disparity in size between the scrotum's left and right sides, should prompt a visit to the paediatrician.
Tell Me About Baby Diapering. Do Girls Have to Be Treated Differently Than Boys?
Always wipe from front to back while changing a girl. If you notice a clear or yellowish discharge in the vaginal area, it's nothing to worry about.
Once again, this is because the unborn child absorbed Mom's hormones throughout gestation. If your kid has been circumcised, the gauze bandage will need to be changed every time you change his diaper, and your paediatrician may recommend using antibiotic ointment or wax.
If you find that your son just has one testicle, it's usually since the other hasn't made it to the scrotum yet. If it persists through the first year, it's worth mentioning to your doctor. If it doesn't, an operation may be necessary.
Is There a Difference Between Adult and Infant Bowel Movements?
Absolutely not. Meconium, a soot, blackish-green substance, will be your baby's first faeces and will be present for a few days.
After the meconium has passed, the baby will have greenish-brown transitional stools; by the fourth or fifth day, a breastfed baby will have yellowish, seedy faeces, while a formula-fed baby would have thicker, yellow to brown-green stools.
How often a infant has a bowel movement will likely vary. Breastfed infants may poop after each meal, or as frequently as once a week, whereas formula-fed infants may poop up to four times a day.
Learning About Your New Infant
Most parents experience a sense of awe and joy throughout the first few weeks of their child's life.
Having this little being placed in your care, especially if you have no experience with infants, can be a little unsettling. Browse our selection of baby bedding, toys, and furnishings for the nursery for all your infant's requirements.
Don't hesitate to reach out to your doctor, other medical experts, or family and friends who have experience care for a newborn if you have any concerns or questions about any aspect of caring for your baby.
It's not always easy to distinguish what's typical for a newborn and what isn't. You can find everything you need for your newborn at My Baby Nursery, which is also worth looking at. The strain of birth may leave a few lumps and a stretched appearance on a newborn's head. Head trauma often results in swelling and bruises in the caput succedaneum. The posterior cranial fossa forms to direct the developing foetus down the cervical canal.
The puffiness of their eyelids may initially prevent some toddlers from opening their eyes fully. Babies that are born with brown eyes will retain that trait as adults. When your baby opens his or her lips, you may notice a few tiny white spots on his or her upper jaw, usually in the middle. Because their squishy cheeks and loose skin hide their neck, newborns generally have a disproportionally short neck. Within the first few weeks, the majority of women no longer experience the expanding effects of breast implants.
The natural process of breast reduction cannot be rushed by applying pressure to the breast tissue. The umbilical cord contains three blood arteries, all of which are protected by a jellylike covering. After birth, the withering chord often turns a darker shade of brown or even black. Umbilical hernias impact a disproportionate number of African-American infants. As a result of their mothers' hormones, most newborn girls are incontinent for a few days after birth, especially of mucus and blood.
Premature babies are more likely to have a fine, downy fuzz (called lanugo) on their faces, shoulders, and backs. It's important for new parents to know what to expect from their babies' behaviour so they can spot any unusual changes right away. Premature infants usually fall behind their term-born peers in cognitive and physical growth. Seek medical treatment if you're worried that your child's growth is abnormally slow. As the name implies, a baby's first reactions to stimuli are primitive reflexes.
Her understanding of these reflexes may help her understand the basis of her baby's behaviour. The rooting reflex causes newborns to turn their heads towards their mother's breast or bottle and start sucking immediately after birth. Occasionally, even at six months of age, infants will cross their eyes. These spots are harmless and should fade away in a few weeks. Both men and women might experience enlargement of the breasts after prolonged hormone exposure.
As long as it stays contained, everything should be alright. Although hydroceles usually cure on their own within a year, surgery may be necessary in extreme situations. Your baby's first stool, known as meconium, is a sooty, blackish-green stuff. Breastfed infants may defecate anywhere from once per week to after every feeding.
- Spending time with your newborn is crucial for establishing a strong attachment.
- As a result of delivery trauma and fluid collection, a newborn's face may look quite puffy.
- Because the "doll's eye" reaction is more common in a child when they are held upright, this is a wonderful position to hold your baby in to encourage eye opening.
- An infant's whites of the eyes may seem pink or crimson at first.
- The form of a person's ears and other features might be permanently affected by the position they were in while still developing in the womb.
- Because their squishy cheeks and loose skin hide their neck, newborns generally have a disproportionally short neck.
- Most parents worry about how the umbilical chord will look and how it should be handled.
- You should visit the doctor if your infant develops a red belly button, especially if there is a foul odour or discharge.
- Umbilical (navel) hernias are more common in African-American infants.
- Because of hormonal shifts, both male and female neonates may have enlarged genitalia.
- Although inguinal (groyne) hernias are more common in boys, they can also occur in infant girls.
- Some new parents may be taken aback by their infant's skin tone or pattern.
- The red marks, bruises, and petechiae will cover your face and other parts of your body.
- It's important for new parents to learn what normal infant behaviour looks like so that they can spot any unusual patterns right away.
- If your baby was born prematurely, don't compare his or her development to that of full-term babies.
- You should contact a medical professional if your newborn is crying more than usual, at unexpected times, or in an unusual manner.
- Infants have a number of reflexes already in place when they are born.
- Her understanding of these reflexes may help her understand the basis of her baby's behaviour.
- There are red spots in my baby's eyes, and his eyes are crossed.
- Regardless, if you observe that your child's eyes are permanently misaligned, you should take him or her to a paediatrician.
- Any newborn male is at risk for hydroceles, but the risk is higher for premature newborns and those with a family history of the disorder.
- It's important to let your doctor know if the problem persists beyond the first year.
FAQs About Newborn Baby
From clothing to food and security, the list can seem daunting. There are six basic needs that all newborn babies require: security, clothing, enough sleep, nutritious food, sensory stimulation, love, and attention.
Avoid burns by not holding your baby while cooking or holding hot food or beverages. Never leave baby unattended on beds, sofas, chairs, or any place where he or she may fall. Install baby gates at the top and bottom of stairways. Never leave baby alone with other young children or with pets.
Some essentials are onesies, pajamas, pants, and swaddle blankets. Bathing: An infant tub, baby washcloths, baby towels, and wash/lotion for sensitive skin. Diapering: If you're going with disposable diapers, one large box of size 1 diapers can get you started. For cloth diapers, experts recommend having 24
Essential newborn care includes: Immediate care at birth Thermal care. Resuscitation when needed.
The term "high-risk newborns" identifies a group of newborns who very likely will develop a severe acute disease or an adverse outcome. Every day, neonatologists are faced with high-risk newborns that represent the majority of patients admitted to the neonatal intensive care units.