Your 24-Week-Old Baby – development & growth

24-Week-Old Baby

Table of Contents

The little one is not so little anymore as they start drinking from a cup – albeit with a little help- as a tiny little 24 week old. Some interesting baby facts and the importance of Kegels for mammas to speed postpartum recovery.

Your baby's twenty-fourth week after birth

As a 24 week old baby, your little one will be already half-way on to celebrate the completion of their first year, and how exciting is that now!? Your baby’s developmental milestones will be peaking yet again, only to leave you amazed at how much this little body and can do.

Your 24-week-old baby's development and physical growth

  • Your baby’s appearance

As compared to at birth, your baby will now be almost twice the size by now in terms of their weight and size alike. Their skin will also look much clearer, giving way to their original complexion to now come through.

  • Your baby’s reflexes

In their 6th month, the baby will not only be able to recognize the parent’s touch but will also make funny expressions of happiness and excitement when they see you after a long day. If you have other kids before your baby or live in a joint family, you can also expect your baby to now fully start recognizing all members of the family.

  • Your baby’s physical development

A lot would be happening to your baby’s overall physical development around now. By month 6 or 24 weeks, your baby’s bones and muscles would also develop to become stronger. Not only will be rolling with more control but may also tend to start to take the adult-like sitting position on their own! Furthermore, as your baby gets ready to show their first tooth, their gums will also become much harder than before.

  • Your baby’s developing nervous system

The baby’s nervous system development will now be in full swing. As their brain develops and they gain more control over their lower body movements, you will also notice your baby trying to put their feet all the way up into their mouth. This might seem a little off at first and you may naturally want them to refrain, but we recommend you let them enjoy this experience as this helps them feel like they are in control.

  • Your baby’s feed

The 24th-week mark is the time when it is highly recommended that you transition your baby’s diet and incorporate some light, easy-to-digest foods such as finger foods like rice puffs and boneless fish. Some pulpy fruits like bananas and mango can also be mashed and fed to the baby. As you introduce the baby to solids, we also want to make you aware of all the potential mess that is going to be created! Using soft spoons and baby burp cloths as protection may be a good idea. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends phasing out bottles between 12 and 24 months of age and so, now will also be a good time to start using soft spout baby sippy cups. Your baby now might also want to hold the cup on their own- albeit with some support from you- but it’s the little things that count!

  • Your baby’s sleep

As the baby’s feed and feeding habits change, so will now his sleep patterns. The teething, furthermore, when clubbed with the feeding habits will only make it more difficult for the little one to be able to sleep through the night. Be prepared to soothe and feed your baby at unexpected times in the night. Your more-active-than-usual baby will still, however, need a minimum of 3-daytime naps in the duration of 1-3 hours in the day and you need to make sure that they get it, even if they instead look like in a mood to play or have fun.

  • Your baby’s babble that finally makes sense

Up until now, whenever your baby tried to talk to you, it must have been in the form of cooing sounds and noises which would only seldom make sense. A 24-week old baby will hit a major verbal milestone and you can expect their squeals, growls to transition to what is called “canonical babbling.” Canonical babbling, in simple terms, means your baby’s vocal skills will now begin to sound like actual words as they will begin to join consonants with vowels to make words like dada and mama. They will now also be ready to imitate your speech and will be taking note of your speech pattern, hence, it is not only recommended to spend a lot of time talking to your baby but also to be aware of what you say around them.

Your 24-week-old baby's health

As a significantly growing baby and as a 6-months old, week 24 will mark a lot of your baby’s first, including some first serious illness episodes. This is because your baby will be rolling and moving around so much, making them a lot more prone and vulnerable to picking illness-causing bugs on the way. Their immune system is still immature and since this will be the first exposure to most viruses, the contraction is only normal, if not obvious. Here’s what you should keep an open eye for-

  • Bronchiolitis

As a result of Bronchiolitis, you can expect your baby to be down with an upper respiratory infection, causing them to make weird wheezing and grumbling noises every time they cough or breath. While Bronchiolitis is curable in its initial stages just by using a baby humidifier to help the baby de-congest, in more severe cases, you may need to reach out to your pediatrician for professional help. A serious case of Bronchiolitis can be identified as the one wherein the wheezing and grumbling cough instead changes to labored breathing, nasal flaring, even blue, air-deprived lips.

  • Influenza vaccination

Your little one will also most likely be recommended the influenza vaccination shot around this time and so make sure you book your appointment in advance.

It might also be a good idea to keep an open eye for any unusual behavioral changes like incessant crying or a general lack of interest in activities on your baby’s end. You must also be prepared to have your baby suffer through diarrhea, owing to the change in diet and transition from just liquids to semi-solid or finger foods.

Final Thoughts- Dealing with separation anxiety and the importance of Kegels for mammas

When we say separation anxiety here, we mean the way your baby will seem to attach to your hip and would want you to just stay with them, especially when you are going to work. This happens because babies, as early as 6 months, owing to their developing brain, tend to understand when someone is leaving them and perhaps don’t quite like the fact. While this separation anxiety might break your heart a little every morning as you go to work, it is also good news because this just shows that your baby is on track in terms of brain development. It also further indicated a healthy attachment. Having said that, as much as it may hurt you, we recommend reassuring your baby you will be back and go about with your day. They may create a fuss for the initial few days but over time, this will only instill the importance of being independent in your child.

As your baby turns 24 weeks old, you, as the mother, may also be getting back to your normal life, but in reality, you are still far from 100% postpartum recovery. The signs of under-recovery will show in your daily life as you go around doing normal things. Bladder control, in most women, tends to go out of the window for most women. At this point, doing some kegel exercises, in particular, can help strengthen your pelvic floor. Kegel does not even need you to visit a gym or to specially make time and hence, it should not even be tough for you to get your body used to the exercises. You’d just need to squeeze the inner muscles used to stop yourself from peeing mid-flow and with each squeeze, hold the contraction for five seconds. Then relax for five seconds, completely unsqueezing the muscles, and repeat this five times in a row. Once you start getting the hang of it, you can increase the number of reps and perhaps, even try longer holds. Kegels are commended to be done multiple times during the day.

FAQs:Your 24-Week-Old Baby - development & growth

1. What kind of games should I be playing with my 23-week old baby?

24-week old babies are very active and so, you should try indulging in games that are played on the floor. This way, they also get time to engage their limbs for physical development. The muscular development will also, over time, help them get themselves up into a sitting position from lying down on their own. Babies at this age also tend to love games that involve rhymes, talking, sing, and sounds of sorts.

2. Why is my 24-week old baby not developing at a faster pace?

All babies have their own individual growth curve and they do not all grow at the same pace. While your baby's slow development may seem alarming, it may, in fact, be absolutely normal as developmental milestones for all babies may happen a little off the average timeline. Slow development especially happens in babies that are born prematurely. If you still have doubts it needs to be double sure, it is always recommended to seek professional help from your child's pediatrician.

3. How do I track a premature baby's development and growth?

Premature babies are given dual dates; a chronological age (which is the actual birth date of the baby) and a corrected age (which means the baby’s actual due date.) You would need to measure your baby’s development from their corrected age and not the chronological date.

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