Do you wonder if your little one is eating enough, sleeping enough, and on track for all those important milestones?
Check out these easy-to-spot signs that help prove your baby is both happy and healthy.
FIVE SIGNS OF A HEALTHY BABY
1. A healthy baby calms at your touch and the sound of your voice. What it proves: You’ve got a good relationship. When your child is calmed by your presence, that’s her first step in bonding with you and a clear sign that she’s developing emotionally.
2. You’re changing 8-10 wet diapers a day and she’s gaining weight. What it proves: She’s getting enough milk even if how much he drinks changes.
If you’re nursing, how can you be sure your baby is drinking enough breast milk? The proof is in the wet diapers. Babies don’t eat the same amount every day, or even every feeding. “There are growth spurts and slowdowns. The important thing is that weight increases over time.”
3. Your healthy baby is quiet and attentive at least a few times each day. What it proves: She’s starting to learn. When infants are quiet and alert, they’re taking note of everything around them and processing all kinds of new information. “Babies begin having more awake time when they’re about 1 month old. That’s when they can briefly settle down and soak in more visual cues.”
4. She makes eye contact, smiles and flirts with people. What It Proves: Your baby is becoming a social and a happy creature. The first moment of eye contact with your newborn usually comes when he’s a month old, the first smile by about 2 months, cooing at 3 months, and laughing by 4 months — and none of these milestones comes a moment too soon.
All of these interactions show that your baby is connecting with you and becoming more aware of his surroundings. On some level, he understands that people interact with him more when he behaves in a socially engaging manner. By the time a healthy baby is about 5 months, he almost has to smile when someone smiles at him, as if it’s a reflex.
5. Your healthy baby can support her own body weight. What It Proves: Those mini muscles are getting stronger. Lots of babies hold their head up briefly — so briefly! — by 1 month. By the time they’re 3 months old, they’re typically doing so more regularly and with greater skill. If your baby can hold her head up or shift around in your arms, you know she’s flexing her growing muscles.
To help her along, make sure she’s spending quality time outside the carrier or car seat. Tummy time on the floor (most babies’ version of an exercise class) can especially help speed up the development of different muscles, including ones that allow her to roll or sit unassisted.