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Infant - Week #11

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Newborn Week Eleven

By Angela Sawinski, edHelperBaby

           Your baby's hair isn't necessarily here to stay. He may lose it by six months, and what grows in might have an entirely new color and texture.


  Expressing Breast Milk
           A breast pump allows you to quickly collect breast milk so you can have a supply available when you're away from your baby. If you're going back to work soon, mastering pumping will help you to continue breastfeeding and to feel connected to your baby when you're away. Even when you're at home, it can be handy to have bottles of pumped milk to hand to your partner - or to leave with a sitter when you go out. Using a breast pump can also boost your body's milk production, make it easier to feed a premature baby who's unable to latch on, or to lessen the pain of engorged breasts.

       Some women swear by lightweight hand-operated pumps, which are simple to operate and economical if you need only the occasional few ounces of pumped milk. Most women prefer to use electric pumps, however, which tend to be easier to use and work more quickly. Electric pumps can be purchased at baby goods stores or rented from hospital-supply companies for short-term use. If you're working, you'll want to choose a portable model that's easy to carry.

       Breast milk should be stored in feeding bottles or special bags made for storing breast milk. Remember to write the date the milk was expressed on whatever container you put the milk in. Use refrigerated expressed milk within seventy-two hours. If you freeze the milk, it can be stored for up to three months.


           Colic is a term used to describe uncontrollable crying in an otherwise healthy baby. If your baby is younger than five months old and cries for more than three hours in a row on three or more days a week for at least three weeks (phew!), chances are he's colicky. Colic isn't a disease and won't cause your baby any long-term harm, but it's a tough thing to go through for both babies and their parents.       

       Colic most often shows up when a baby is around two or three weeks old (or two or three weeks after the baby's due date if he's a preemie).       

       While babies normally cry when they're wet or hungry or frightened or tired, a baby with colic cries inconsolably and excessively, often at the same time of day, frequently in the late afternoon or evening.       

       If your baby has colic, his belly may look enlarged. You may notice that he alternately extends or pulls up his legs and passes gas as he cries.

       Thankfully, there's a light at the end of the tunnel. Colic tends to peak around six weeks, then improves significantly between three and four months. By five months, your baby should be over it.       

       Yes, that's a long tunnel. In the meantime, learn how to comfort your baby as best you can and ask for help when you need it. Caring for a colicky baby can be very stressful, and you need to take regular breaks to maintain your own well-being. Have your mate or a friend or relative take over while you go for a walk or let loose with a good cry yourself when you need to.       

       Colic is one of the great mysteries of baby life. About twenty percent of babies become colicky. The condition is equally common among firstborn and later-born, boys and girls, breastfed and formula-fed. No one knows why some babies are more prone to it than others, but theories abound. And there may well be more than one cause.       

       Your baby may have colic because his digestive system is a bit immature or sensitive. A newborn's digestive tract contains very few of the enzymes and digestive juices needed to break down food, so processing the proteins in breast milk or formula can lead to painful gas.       

       The act of screaming itself can cause your baby to swallow a lot of air and that, too, leads to gassiness. If your baby has colic because of tummy trouble, you may notice that his symptoms get worse after a feeding or before a bowel movement.       

       Some experts believe that long bouts of colicky crying are a physical release for overwrought babies. Your baby might be easily overwhelmed if he's sensitive by nature, for example, or if he's recovering from a difficult birth or was born prematurely and his nervous system is still developing. By the time evening rolls around, these babies just can't handle any more sights, sounds, or sensations, and they cry to blow off steam.


  Try This!
           This game will help teach your baby listening skills while encouraging visual exploration. Hold your baby on your lap so that he is facing you. Support his head and help him move as you play this game. Say the baby's name as you move your head from left to right. As you move your head, your baby should follow it with his eyes. Keep repeating the game but change the tone of your voice each time you move your head back and forth. You can say his name in a soft voice, a whisper, a louder voice, a happy voice, or whatever voice you choose. You can also change the expression on your face each time you move back and forth.


Dayvian's Experience
           I played this game with Dayvian in the morning after he had been fed, burped, and changed. He was happy and content looking around the room when I picked him up to play this game. The first time I said his name and moved my head, he looked at me with a confused looked on his face (this seems to be his natural first reaction to something new). Even though he looked confused, his eyes still followed me as I moved my head. As the game went on, the confused look went away, and he began to smile and coo at me while he followed my movements. He was engaged in this activity for nearly ten minutes before he became fussy.


     What can my baby see?

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