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Infant - Week #7

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Newborn Week Seven

By Angela Sawinski, edHelperBaby

  Make Memories
           Children grow up so fast! Before you know it, their childhood will be over (okay, not quite that fast). Be sure to take pictures of your children often. With the technology of digital cameras, you don't even need to print them all off. You can just upload to an online photo album (like the one on this website) or even just onto your computer. My husband and I have made a point to take at least two pictures of each child a week.


Look Who's Talking!
           By this age, your baby should be starting to talk. Some talk more than others-not with words of course but by cooing with increasing goos, gurgles, and grunts. This marks the beginning of his language development. In order to encourage this, you should talk to your baby often. You will be able to keep his attention by shifting the pitch of your voice from high to low pitches throughout your conversation.


Q - Why Do Some Babies Get Lip Blisters?
           The way a baby sucks when she's feeding creates friction on her lips, which can cause blisters. Such blisters are more common in breastfed babies than in formula-fed babies, probably because nursing babies have to create suction with their mouths in a way that causes more rubbing. You don't need to do anything about lip blisters, which usually aren't painful. If you're a nursing mother, you could try experimenting with different feeding positions.  Another suggestion would be to put some nipple cream on the blister. This may help heal the wound faster. Lip blisters tend to show up among younger babies and are occasionally present at birth - evidence that the newborn was sucking on her fingers or toes in utero.


Protecting Your Baby From Secondhand Smoke
           Secondhand smoke can be extremely dangerous for babies. Among other things, it weakens their lungs, makes them more prone to ear infections, and doubles the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). At the very minimum, you should make sure nobody smokes anywhere in your house, no exceptions.       

       Cigarettes spread harmful chemicals, including nicotine and carbon monoxide, all over your house. If you light up in one room, the smoke will be detectable in the entire house within minutes, and that includes the baby's room. The chemicals and particles that make secondhand smoke dangerous will immediately stick to just about everything in the house, including carpets, walls, furniture, and even stainless steel. Over the next few weeks and months, these contaminants will slowly be released back into the air - the same air that your baby breathes.       

       Studies have been conducted in homes where smokers have either only smoked in a separate room or only smoked outside. In both cases, elevated levels of toxins were found in the home. Smoking outside or in another room will not protect your baby from smoke. Smokers spread contaminants wherever they go - they seep out of their clothes, skin, hair, and breath. For this reason, smokers should:
  • Wear clean clothes (that they haven't worn while smoking) around the baby
  • Wash their hands and face often (especially after smoking)
  • Not let the baby suck on their fingers
  • Keep a blanket between them and the baby

       If your house has already been contaminated with cigarette smoke, try clearing the air by opening some windows and doors. A HEPA air filter might help for a while, but you'll have to change the filters often because they will quickly get clogged. Vacuuming your house with a HEPA filter-equipped vacuum is a good idea, too. Wipe surfaces with a damp cloth, and wash your baby's toys and blankets and any other objects he may stick in his mouth.       

       Shielding a baby from smoke is a hassle. If you are concerned about your baby's health, encourage smokers in your house to quit for good. It's the best protection that your baby can get.


Try This!
           This game will help your baby learn about sounds and continue to develop his language skills. One of the newborn's most highly developed abilities is responding to sound, including the difference between high- and low-pitched sounds. Hold your baby close to you and say his name in a soft, high-pitched voice. For example say, "Johnnie, Johnnie, I love you." Next say the same words in a soft, low-pitched voice. Alternate between using high and low voices several times.


  Dayvian's Experience
           I did this activity with Dayvian after his morning feeding. He had slept well at night, had a fresh diaper on, and had a full tummy. This is normally a good time for him to be content lying on a blanket looking around the room. So I did just that. I laid a blanket down on the living room floor and placed Dayvian on it - tummy facing up. I sat down beside him and leaned over him slightly so that he could easily see me. I said in a soft, high pitched voice, "Dayvian, Dayvian, Mommy loves you." He looked to the direction of my voice and his eyes met mine. I then repeated this line in a soft, low-pitched voice. He again looked to me and responded with a coo. When I changed the pitched of my voice, he made a confused look with his eyebrows. I continued to talk with him in varying pitches for ten minutes or so. At times it felt as though we were having a conversation!


Notes On Dayvian
           I cannot believe that he is seven weeks old already - WOW! This week was the first week where he was noticeably smiling and cooing throughout the day. I really wish that I could get some consistency out of him as far as his sleeping goes. One day, he will be awake all day and only take 15-minute catnaps. The next day, he will want to sleep all day and I need to wake him for his feedings. The same thing goes for at night. One night he will sleep up to seven hours before waking to be fed, and the next night he will want to eat every two hours. Surprisingly, his nighttime and daytime sleep habits do not seem to coincide. There are so many days that I'd just love to know what goes on inside of babies' heads.


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