The second month
The first six weeks can be tough. You spend all your waking hours (and a lot of non-waking hours) attending to the needs of your newborn and you don’t get much back.
Don’t worry - it will be all worth it when you see that first smile in week 5 or 6! Your heart will melt and you’ll forget all about the frequent night waking, the seemingly endless crying and even the poo explosion in the car seat.
Also, this month your baby will start to vocalise in ways other than crying – so expect to hear some ‘coo-ing’ and ‘goo-ing’!
At this age, your baby needs about 16-17 hours of sleep every 24 hours, with feeds 2-4 hourly. She may have one six-hour sleep (hopefully at night!).
You may notice that your once-sleepy newborn is becoming more alert and can stay awake for longer. Until now she might have drifted off anywhere, any time – on grandpa’s shoulder, in her pram at a noisy party or on the floor at your friend’s house. Now, she might only sleep when you ‘put her to sleep’.
To make sure she doesn’t get overtired, you can learn to recognise your baby’s tired signs and put her to bed when you see them. She will probably be ready for bed after 90 minutes of being awake and tired signs might include jerky arm and leg movements, pulling away, difficulty focussing, clenched fists, grizzly cry, rubbing eyes and yawning.
You probably didn’t think you’d be buying toys already, but it might be time to invest in a baby gym or play mat. It’s handy to have somewhere safe and comfy for baby to play and he’ll enjoy watching his toys swing overhead. Try giving your baby a rattle, as he’ll soon grab objects if you touch them on his palm.
If you’re breastfeeding but want your baby to accept the occasional bottle of expressed milk, this month might be the best time to give it a try. At five weeks your baby is old enough to accept a bottle without risk of nipple confusion and young enough to accept it without much protest.
Vaccinations are due when your baby is two months old. Make an appointment with your GP or your local immunisation clinic.
More useful links:
Organise to have your groceries home-delivered
Find sleeping and settling products on our directory
Read our article on colic and colic relief!
Buying a breast pump? Read our breast pump reviews
Get some tips on meeting other parents
Learn tips for settling a crying baby
Please note: All babies are different, these are generic guides and aren’t a substitute for professional medical advice. If you have any concerns, don’t hesitate to contact your health care provider.
GO BACK: Baby Development: The First Month
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