Are you a first-time mom of a one-month-old angel? Are you confused about her development and safety? Well, you should read this post as it has been tailor-made to answer your questions and give you an assurance on how you are going to take care of your baby.
Those first few weeks with your new baby can be magical but they can also be hard. Learning how to feed your baby, help her sleep and understand her consent needs can keep you on your toes or asleep on your feet but if something is troubling you today, do not worry too much.
You might be surprised how different some parts of your baby’s life can be from one week to the next at this stage.
Here is something to help ease your mind. Life for your baby is quite simple at this moment. All that matters to the child is eating, sleeping, every couple of hours, having a cleaner diaper and getting lots of love and affection, you know TLC!
But as for your new mom, life may seem considerably more complicated so just focus on just the essentials which are your baby’s basic needs.
Below are some care tips for your one-month-old baby to keep her safe, sound and healthy
Feed them frequently
Newborns need to feed many times, especially during the day. You are recommended to feed your infant at least six times a day.
If you are breastfeeding your baby, you can increase the feeding to up to 12 times a day. Do not try to control feeding times as your baby has an unpredictable sleeping and feeding schedule
Understand the sleep cues and just let them sleep uninterrupted
At one-month-old baby care also involves taking care of the sleep timings as they are uncertain, and they tend to sleep at any hour of the day. Let your one-month-old infant sleep as per their convenience.
Be sensitive to your baby’s sleep cues. Most babies tend to sleep soon after their feed. When your baby is done feeding just place her in her cradle and let her catch some sleep but do not try to control her sleeping patterns.
Ensure medical care
Your baby will be due for her first immunization within a month after her birth. Therefore, you need to check out which vaccinations your baby needs to have and at which clinics.
Prevent your baby from coming in contact with any infected or unhealthy individual since it may make your infant vulnerable to a contagious infection. Wash your hands every time before you handle your newborn and them food and water.
Check and change her diapers from time to time. Cleanliness ensures good hygiene of your dear little angel.
Ensure the safety of your infant
Place your baby crib at a safe location if your room away from the window so that the rain, dust, and other elements coming in from the window will not harm your infant. Avoid placing toys and any other objects inside the baby crib.
When your baby is on the couch or changes the table, ensure you have one hand on her all the time since active infants can squirm and wiggle and need attention. Avoid holding your baby by one arm as she is too small to hold her neck and support herself.
Use both hands to hold and carry your little one.
Play and interact with them
Do this every time she is up or awake. Call her by name, play some music and try to get their attention. Let your baby have some supervised tummy time every day as it helps her develop strength in her upper body and neck.
Make sure you place your babies on their tummies for a short while as they are too young to stay longer. You can also introduce them to some colorful and sound-producing toys to entertain her.
Rattles, teethers and baby crib toys can be great options to entertain and interact with your baby.
Your child cannot talk but she may be pinging you by sending non-verbal cues about what she wants and needs. Mimic her sounds and pay attention to how she responds to you too.
She may have started making little barks or noises it is fun to echo them back to her.
High contrast toys (black and white) are great at this age. Choose them over pastel-colored ones which will be harder for the baby to focus on.
If your baby has colic crying and fussing more than 3 hours a day in a given week, you can try to flex her legs at the knees and hips to see if you can relieve some gas. A ride or walk also can help.
For general fussiness, music also may help soothe the savage beast. Your voice may be perfect and a known quantity or you can try listening to something both of you might like just not too jarring or headbanging.
Puffy eyes may match yours but unlike yours, your brand-new baby’s pair are swollen form delivery and perhaps the antibiotic eye ointment administered right after birth.
Her vision is a little blurry but she can see your face and other close-up objects just be sure to place her 8-12 inches in front of you, this is her range of vision. You may also notice their eyes cross sometimes, do not worry about it because the muscles that control eye movement are not yet fully developed.
While her hearing is not completely developed, your child is already familiar with your voice and other sounds that she heard often in the womb.
Her sense of taste is highly developed and she can differentiate between sweet and bitter with a preference towards the sweet stuff that is breast milk and the baby formula.
Soon after her arrival, she will recognize your scent
The sense is the most developed at birth. Through touch, your body learns the softness of your face that nothing more rewarding than a cuddle and that she is loved by those who care for her.
Newborn babies sleep a lot just not all at one time. Expect them to sleep for about 14 to 17 hours a day or even more waking frequently for feeding. It can also be up to 19 or 20 under 14 thought the average sleeping hours for a newborn are 14 – 17 hours.
Breastfed babies typically need to eat every two to three hours and formula-fed babies or those who feed on both usually eat every three to four hours.
Feed your baby on demand rather than following a feeding schedule. When your baby is in dreamland be sure she is sleeping in 100 percent safe conditions placed on her back on a firm mattress with no pillows, blankets, stuffed animals or crib bumpers to reduce the risk of SIDS.
Milk needs for newborns
Babies eat a lot during those first months at least 8 – 12 times or more in a day. Since your breasts and baby do not have a built-in meter, it can be hard to gauge when your baby has had enough to eat.
But there are a few clues if your baby seems happy, their weight gain is appropriate for their age and if they are making enough dirty diapers maybe 8 to 12 on any given day, they are probably getting enough. Now one-month-old babies need to need to frequent in feeding and there sleeping patterns are uncertain.
Many newborns tend to sleep during the daytime and mostly stay awake during the night, therefore organizing their feeding times can be tiresome.
Month 1 Baby’s health 101
Crying; There is no doubt that newborns cry, it is how they communicate! Whether you have a calm baby or a fussy one, you will start to get used to all the variations of those little whimpers and walls this first month.
Crying can be a sign a baby is healthy. If your little one does not cry much, especially when you know they may need something, see your doctor right away!
But what if they cry all the time?
Some babies just cry all the time more than others. Studies show that 80-90% of babies have daily crying sessions from 15 minutes to an hour that are not easily explained. Sometimes these sessions are predictable in the evening or after a busy day out of the house for example. Sometimes they just pop up like a storm.
Make sure she is not hungry, does not need a diaper change and has not had something uncomfortable happen like maybe a thread wrapped around a toe. If all this is in check, help her through it the best you can; rock her, walk her, sing to her or cuddle her.
It may take several tries to help calm her down but if you feel yourself losing patience or are just plain worn out, it is okay to put her down somewhere safe like her crib for a few minutes. She may even surprise you and drift off to sleep by herself.
There are strategies for soothing baby cries including those of colicky infants, sometimes nothing seems to work.
A few things the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests: swaddling the baby, applying firm pressure to her tummy, changing your diet if you are nursing in case there is food sensitivity or gas, offering a pacifier, holding a baby, running a hair drier or other noisemakers that might remind her of sounds in the womb.
The best thing to do to get through colic is to try to stay calm and take turns with a partner or caregiver in giving your baby attention.
Umbilical cord healing
Whether your baby came into this world via the vaginal birth, C-section or speedy side of the road delivery all newborns have one thing in common; a stumpy, shriveled umbilical cord where the belly button should be.
The umbilical cord stump should fall off within the first few weeks of your little one’s life until then, make sure to keep it clean and dry. Give your pediatrician a call when you notice a foul-smelling discharge or the site still looks open and raw two weeks after the cord has fallen off.
Umbilical hernia; You might have noticed odd-looking bulges and bumps on your baby’s belly when she cries or moves in certain ways. What you are likely to see is an umbilical hernia, do not worry as it is not dangerous.
When your baby was receiving nutrients through the cord a thick bundle of blood vessels entered her body through the middle of her abdomen creating a small circular hole in her stomach muscles.
Often, that gap remains for a short time after birth causing the intestines to bulge out when your child strains. Small umbilical hernias usually resolve themselves within a few months.
At one month, most babies will be able to
- Lift head briefly during supervised tummy
- Focus on a face
- Bring hands to face
- Suck well
Half of the babies will be able to respond to loud noise in some way
Some babies will be able to
- Lift head 45 degrees when on tummy
- Vocalize in ways other than crying
- Smile in response to a smile
This is the time to put laundry, cleaning and other chores on hold as much as you can and ask your family and friends for some help as the real deal is about baby care. Order food if you can or ask a friend or a family member to bring you some of theirs.
How does the baby look? Well, babies do not emerge from the womb picture-perfect it often takes some weeks or even months before the angel in them is unleashed just as you might have expected them to turn out to be.
From a flattened nose to a cone-shaped head especially if you have been pushing for a long time, your child is beautiful and your concern about appearance will change over time in the following weeks.
Right from the first day, your baby has got set reflexes designed to protect them and also ensure they get the right care she needs.
Some of these early reflexes include rooting reflex, which helps her locate the breast or feeding bottle, the sucking reflex which helps them in feeding, the palmar reflex which helps them grip your finger when you put in the palm and the Moro reflex, the jumpy reaction they have when startled.