Your baby's fifth week after birth
Before we get into what you can expect from your baby this week, we’d like to take this opportunity to firstly congratulate you on the completion of the first month after birth, it has perhaps been quite a ride to stay focused on.
Now, leaving behind the hustle of the baby development and you getting used to being pro parents (almost), this week would comparatively be a smoother one for the little one and the parents. Having said that, this doesn’t mean you could take a seat back and relax just yet. You have a lot on your plate, from the baby interactions to their imitation.
Here’s what you can expect this week!
Your 5-week-old baby's development and physical growth
Let us look at what is happening with your baby and in their body in terms of their physical development in the fifth week after birth.
1. Your baby's weight:
- The 5-week old baby’s weight tends to grow by ounces and should be somewhere between the 9-pound range. This isn’t your little baby anymore but is growing really fast. Make sure, you arrange for more bonding sessions, as before you could even blink, they are all grown and jolly.
- There is a possibility that you might not find your baby big/taller enough, therefore, it is recommended to measure the growth against their own, and not as per your friend’s baby.
- If the doctor is happy with the little one’s weight gain, you should be too. Be rest assured, the little one is all healthy.
2. Your baby's sleep:
- As per the American Academy Of Pediatrics, newborns up to 3 or 4 months old would need about 14 to 17 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period. Including them waking up every two to four hours to eat. So, make sure to give your baby their baby sleep as per the hours a day, or the baby might wake up all cranky and wild.
3. Your baby's diet:
- Generally, the babies in their 5th week would consume roughly around 16 to 24 ounces of breast milk or formula in a 24 hour period.
Your newborn and 5-week-old baby's reflexes
As parents, you might notice that there are a few changes in the little ones’ communication skills. While they still try to communicate with you by crying in order to tell you about their needs, the baby at five weeks is also learning to communicate in other ways. Here’s how:
- The baby now tries to make an effort in communicating via their adorable grunts, gurgles, and coos using their little mouth, tongue, and their throat. This is when they discover the combination of actions that helps them to make sounds, indicating that they are in need of feeding or are tired.
- Be aware, as your baby could anytime match their coo-for-coo and eventually lead to the first meaningful words – “Mama” or “Dada.”
It is still important for you as parents to speak in your language while you are communicating in the baby language as they only learn to repeat what they hear and imitate. Try to talk while you are changing the little one’s diaper, or are at a walk, or even while feeding. This will help them observe every syllable that’s spoken, and hearing you talk is the best way to develop their speech.
Your newborn and 5-week-old baby's health
5 weeks old babies don’t really have a doctor’s appointment, but there area few things you must know in week five
- Is it thrush?
This is a kind of yeast infection that appears as white or yellow patches, or even as sores in the baby’s mouth, gums, tongue, roof, or the insides of the cheeks. In case your baby develops these, contact your doctor for further assistance.
- Dry skin
The development of dry skin in babies generally takes place in the colder months. These dry spots can appear as rough, flaky skin on the little one’s skin. It also at times tends to crop up on the hands, feet, face, and lips. Use baby lotion equally from the baby’s neck to their toes, or ask the doctor for a supplement in case the baby is allergic to lotions.
- Spot colic in a 5-week old baby
Colic is when the baby cries nonstop for at least three hours a day, or three days a week, or in some cases three weeks in a row. This, however, resolves on its own by around week 12.
- Diarrhea in babies
Diarrhea in 5-week old babies can be caused due to viral and bacterial infections, antibiotics use, food sensitivities, or teething. Perhaps, it usually clears up within a few days, but make sure the baby is well hydrated.
Postpartum baby tips: Week 5 after birth
Baby smiles and sounds
The baby at 5 weeks of age tends to interact more via their smiles and coo sounds. However, the smiles could mean more than just them being jolly or a call for another diaper change. And, who better to acknowledge and practice these adorable smiles than the Mom and Dad?
- The 5-week old baby will now smile at or on anything now: this includes music, tummy time, humming, or even when you are around them or they happen to see you working around their crib. It is now on you to decipher what each smile indicates.
- The little one is now aware of other sounds in the background too, including the bells, barking dogs, running water, and whistles. They may also begin to kick with pleasure at these sounds, cry out, or quiet down in order to listen. However, make sure that these sounds don’t scare the baby but keep them calm and smiling. Have you also tried the baby sound machines yet?
Does your baby have an infant ache and you are not aware of the reason?
- Statically, in about 40 percent of infants, the ache develops at 2 to 3 weeks of age and is supposed to be gone before the 6-month mark. These are caused by a mom’s hormones that might be still circulating in a baby’s bloodstream.
- These are harmless and won’t leave any permanent scars on the little one. Also, remember to impulse to squeeze them or apply any creams. In case your baby is facing unbearing achenes, contact your doctor for further assistance.
- These are soft, strawberry look-alikes that may appear on the head of the baby, chest, or upper back, and are extremely common. However, you need not get stressed as they do fade away between 5 and 10 years of age.
- These appear during fetal development when the immature veins and capillaries detach themselves from the circulatory system. However, if they begin to grow larger, bleed, or get infected, you’d need to consult your doctor as it might hinder the little one’s ability to eat, and blurs the vision.
- Compression and massage are the simplest treatments to fade the birth mark’s away. The other treatment includes steroids, surgery, laser therapy, cryotherapy, and injection. You can consult your doctor as to what could be the best option for your baby.
The mother's body after childbirth: What is happening in your body in the fifth week after giving birth?
Your belly after delivery
- Irrespective of you not gaining much excess weight during your pregnancy, and were successful in shedding most of the post-pregnancy pounds, expect a post-baby bump to stick around for at least a month or more post-birth.
- The skin now is more elastic and you might also feel the abdominal cramping for the first few days after childbirth. This is an indication that your uterus has started to shrink, and the abdominal muscles have now distended to make room for the baby, for the future.
Breastfeeding birth control?
You might have heard that breastfeeding is a form of birth control. Perhaps, it isn’t untrue, but not the complete truth either.
- It offers protection to a certain point. In cases when you are breastfeeding your baby exclusively, that is every four hours during the daytime, every six hours at night for the first six months postpartum is referred to as Lactational Amenorrhea (LAM), which is a form of birth control.
- In case you do not meet the criteria mentioned above or have opted for formula instead, it doesn’t offer contraceptive protection. So, check before you call it birth control. Therefore, to be on the safer end, the OB/GYN suggests switching to another birth control in case you’re having sex until your baby is at least 12 to 18 months old.
With a baby 5 weeks old, it isn’t anything less than milestones for you to have almost become pro parents. You are now capable of reading and understanding the baby’s smiles or expressions if they are sleeping, are likely hungry, need a new diaper, or are just in a good mood. You must perhaps start to appreciate your achievements, even the smallest, and try not to be too hard on yourself.
Have bonding sessions, talk to the baby, build a connection, the little one is soon growing and we’re sure you are proud of the whole journey and look forward to the many to come.