Stages of Newborn Baby Development
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Stages of Newborn Baby Development

The term "newborn" refers to babies less than 1month old. Newborn baby development can be a fascinating topic for mothers of newborns. Aside from being intriguing, having a strong understanding of the different stages of newborn baby development can help you catch any lags in development that may lead to future problems. These major milestones and stages of newborn baby development are among the most crucial for parents to know.


Babies are born with several unique reflex responses. This includes an instinctive response to suck when the cheek is stroked, the reflex to grab what is placed in his hand and the reflex to step when held upright. Knowing these reflexes is important for all parents to gauge their own child’s development. For instance, if a baby does not display the moro reflex, the reflex to extend his arms and legs quickly when startled, that child may have a hearing or developmental problem. Any of these reflexes that appear to be absent should be monitored and discussed with a pediatrician.


The first month of life, thebiggest newborn developments go basically unnoticed by parents. These are the developments of the child’s senses. At birth, a baby cannot see more than 10 inches in front of her face. However, as the first month progresses, her seeing will improve and she will begin to distinguish between color patterns. One of the strongest newborn developments occurs with a baby’s smell. A baby will learn exactly what each parent smells like and will respond appropriately. For instance, if the mother is breastfeeding, the baby may sense that meal time is coming every time mom enters the room. It should also be noted that a baby’s sense of hearing should be quite acute by the time he is born. If a baby doesn’t seem responsive to sounds, it may be wise to provide a hearing test. The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh estimates that 1 in every 1,000 children is born with some type of hearing ailment. Diagnosing this at a young age can aid in providing a normal life.

Sleeping Habits

One of the most stressful aspects of having a newborn baby in the house is the limited sleeping you’ll have. Newborn babies require frequent feedings and diaper changes. This leaves the weary mom waking every other hour. However, by the end of the first month most newborns begin to sleep between 4 and 6 hours at a time.


Newborn babies have few resources. For this reason, they cry for every little discomfort and need. The odd thing about this stage of early development is that these frequent cry sessions are entirely tearless. Newborns’ eye ducts aren’t completely developed until several weeks after birth. As the tear ducts finish forming, they frequently become clogged and require physical manipulation to clear. If you’re not up to the task, this can be accomplished by a pediatrician or a fellow clean-handed mom or dad.


One of the most exciting stages of newborn baby development is that first sincere smile. While smiles in the first few weeks can be attributed to gas, that first smile a newborn baby flashes because he’s happy is monumental. This may occur when she sees you suddenly or as she is being tickled and played with. Most newborn babies will begin to smile when they’re about 1 month old. If a newborn is not smiling by 7 weeks, she should be monitored for other signs of slow emotional development.

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