You and your baby have been together for almost over a month now. By this time, you and your baby have probably established a routine. Your baby at six weeks will be reaching more milestones and growing more and more every day.
How Your Baby is Growing
Your baby’s growth is one of the most important clues to their health and development. At birth, your little one probably weighed around 2.5 kilograms to 4.5 kilograms, which is the normal range for any healthy newborn’s weight.
A newborn baby’s length can also vary between 18 inches to 22 inches and their head circumference is usually around 13.5 inches.
A healthy newborn baby will gain 5 to 7 ounces a week which means by the end of their 2nd month, they’re most probably going to be 4 pounds heavier than their birth weight. Your baby may also grow ½ to 1 inch every month until they’re around 6 months old.
During this week, and the weeks to follow, your baby will be growing more rapidly than ever. Many babies go through “growth spurts” when they hit the 6-week mark, which means that they will be fussier and hungrier during these periods. Growth spurts are most likely to occur during the first year of your baby’s life, but usually happen at 2 to 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months and 6 months.
With your baby’s 6th week of life comes new and exciting developmental milestones. These milestones are usually used by doctors to determine whether or not your baby is on the right track of development.
Your baby might not develop at the same pace as other babies do. However, every infant’s developments follow a pattern starting from the head to toe.
Babies first learn to lift their head up before they’re able to walk, or they may first learn how to push their torsos up with their elbows before doing that with their hands. Keeping this in mind will help you keep track and predict what your baby might be able to do next.
When you hold them in a sitting position, your baby may already know how to hold up their head.
During this week, you can look forward to witnessing your baby’s first smile so be sure to have your camera ready! If your baby doesn’t smile during this week then don’t worry. It might happen in the weeks to follow.
Focus and attention
Your baby will also start paying attention to whoever’s talking or be able to follow you with their gaze.
Try striking a conversation with your baby and they will probably respond with a coo or a gurgle.
Your baby will also start learning how to self-soothe by putting their fingers or fist in their mouths if they start to cry.
Your baby will probably start getting bored at this stage, so if they become fussy make sure to bring them to a new area or entertain them with toys.
Feeding & Nutrition
A growth spurt is expected to happen for your baby at six weeks. This means that during this time, they may need to feed more than usual.
Cluster feeding. If you notice that your baby is demanding short and consecutive feeds over a span of a few hours then your baby is cluster feeding. Cluster feedings often happen in the evening, and usually happen during growth spurts.
Cluster feedings should not be a cause for concern. Oftentimes, your baby is feeding more so that they can sleep longer. Some doctors also believe that your baby cluster feeds in order to boost your own milk supply. In any case, just make sure to feed your baby whenever they ask for it.
Baby Care Tips
By this time, you’ve probably become all too familiar with your baby’s cries. As your baby approaches their second month, you might be able to distinguish more distinct cries that indicate different things like hunger, tiredness, or pain.
During this week of your baby’s life, you may notice that your baby’s bowel movements will change. Your baby may be producing less dirty diapers than they did before.
If you have been exclusively breastfeeding your baby, then this decrease is due to your colostrum running out. A decrease of frequency in bowel movement is not usually a cause for alarm unless:
- Your baby isn’t gaining any weight
- Your baby’s stool is hard or difficult to pass
If you find a rash developing in the areas on or around your baby’s bottom, then it might be a diaper rash. To avoid this, make sure to change your baby’s diapers often or at least every two hours. Another tip to prevent diaper rash is to avoid strongly scented soaps, lotions, or powders that may cause irritation.
At around six to nine weeks, your baby may start to sleep throughout the night. Typically, a baby at this age will sleep for 16 hours for every 24 hour period. One way to help train your infant to have good sleeping habits is to establish a nighttime routine. This way, routines like a warm sponge bath or turning on the white-noise machine will serve as cues for them to sleep.
Baby Health & Safety
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, babies may start to cry more starting from their 6th week to their 8th week of life. If you feel yourself reaching your limits when it comes to your baby’s cries, try to take a break and ask for assistance from your partner or family member.
When dealing with crying spells, take comfort in the fact that this phase will also pass.
Excessive crying can also mean that your baby has “colic,” which usually peaks when your baby reaches the six-week mark.
What to Watch Out For and When to See a Doctor
During check-ups, never hesitate to bring up any concerns about your baby’s health. Inform your doctor immediately if:
- Your baby has an eye that is crossed.
- Your baby does not play with their hands much.
- Your baby has legs or arms that do not move in unison.
More milestones and developments are set to happen during your baby’s sixth week of life. From first smiles to growth spurts, you can expect a lot more exciting changes to happen.
Learn more about Parenting here.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.