Your 6-Week-Old Baby – development & growth

6-Week-Old Baby

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Your 6-week-old-baby discovers they could put their hand in their mouth! Expect some smiles, coos, and drastically changed bowel movements!

Your baby's sixth week after birth

Describing a 6-week old baby’s development would perhaps have a lot to do with their personality now as compared to their smiles and staring capabilities that took away the limelight in the past five weeks.

Their smiling may now seem to be more of a part of the baby’s repertoire, while the babbling and giggling in this week seem to be the baby’s jam that is fun and at times seriously ratcheting up. To help me decode the little one in this sixth week with respect to their growth spurt and development, Parenthood bliss has curated this article with everything parents need to know in good time.

Your 6-week-old baby's development and physical growth

Let us look at what is happening with your 6-week-old-baby and in their body in terms of their physical development in the sixth week after birth.

1. Your baby's weight:

  • Expect your baby to have about 24 to 32 ounces of breast milk or formula in a 24 hours period. These feeding sessions must be spread out every three to four hours.
  • With a good tummy time and food comes lots of pooping. However, the baby may still be on average in terms of their few bowel movements each day. 
  • Alongside, parents can also be prepared with a diaper rash ointment as the baby will now start to use or be in diapers more often. To prevent rashes, make sure that the bottoms of the baby are nice, clean, and dry at all times.

2. Your baby's sleep:

  • Usually, newborns up to 3 or 4 months old would feel like sleeping up to 14 to 17 hours in a 24-hour period. This includes waking every two to four hours to eat too.

3. Your baby's diet:

  • Breastfed babies would generally consume up to 24 to 32 ounces of pumped breast milk or formula in a 24-hour period.

Your newborn and 6-week-old baby's reflexes

  • A 6-week old baby would probably smile much more now, especially because they find it a good idea to practice it on you again and again. Therefore, continue to shower loving interactions with your baby, like talking, cooing, and singing to them.
  • At 6 weeks old, you can expect the little one to have stumbled across their best comfort object using their little fingers. This is perhaps the first step towards self-soothing that is quite important for their development.
  • They can also now try reaching for a dangling object. Therefore, make sure you pull out of the play gym so the baby can get ready and start practicing their motor skills along with their hand-eye coordination.

Your newborn and 6-week-old baby's health

At six weeks you might be in between baby checkups and will be spending quite some time at the doctor’s office. During these weeks, your baby checkups allow the doctor to keep track of their growth and development and ensure everything’s on target. Here’s what you need to know about your baby’s health this week:

  • Questions to ask the doctor

Prepare a list of questions that you take along to the appointment and avoid relying on your memory. Also, as the doctor helps with the answers, make it a point to jot them, and do not shy away from asking for more advice and instructions from your pediatrician.

  • The color of poop

The baby’s poop in the 6th week can change in terms of its color and texture from day to day or, from the bowel movement to the bowel movement.

  • Stuffy nose

You need not worry if your baby has congestion as it is common. The other causes of congestion include respiratory viruses, such as common colds, allergies, and environmental irritants like the smoke of tobacco.

  • Baby-safe medicine

It is always a good idea to consult your doctor before giving any kind of medication to the little one. This would even include the over-the-counter ones.

Postpartum baby tips: Week 6 after birth

The colic carry

If you find your baby crying inconsolably, it could mean that the little one is seeking more pressure and is experiencing colic. However, this is something that fades away itself so you need not overstress and worry: Here’s what you can expect or do to aid colic

  • Try to put pressure on your baby’s tummy in order to relieve gas. This is important as a gassy baby is one of the major reasons for the little one to be cranky or colic. Try to make use of a formula maker instead, as it will help the little one aid the intake of the air bubbles, preventing gas. The other way is to place the baby on their tummy in your forearm and try cradling their head gently. While you are at it, use the other hand to stabilize and rub their back to release gas.
  • Place the baby on their tummy and not in their sleeping position across your lap, with your one knee under their stomach while the other supporting the head. Or, hold the baby upright, with the abdomen on your shoulder, and rub or pat the back, as you would while making sure of the little one burp. Tip – Place a burp cloth before you do so to prevent the clothes from any spit-ups.
  • Or, put the baby on their back and push their knees up to the stomach for 10 seconds.

Diaper rash

In order to prevent the baby diaper rash, try the following  tips:

  • Check and make sure to change the baby into new diapers every two hours. And, while you’re doing so, make sure to use soft and sensitive baby wipes and diaper rash creams to prevent itchy rashes and keep them clean and dry. Once done, throw them in the diaper pails.
  • Purchase wipes that are not made from perfumes or any toxic materials. In fact, try to use the ones that are eco-friendly and toxin-free.  If used otherwise, it could create irritation and itchiness on the baby’s sensitive skin.

Baby's sun protection

Planning to take the baby for a soothing sun session? If yes, make sure you keep the following tips in mind:

  • As to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), avoid keeping the baby in direct sunlight for an extended period of time before they are 6 months old.
  • Dress the infant accordingly. This means the 6-week old baby must have protective clothing including a cute hat, long sleeves top, lightweight pants, and socks.
  • Purchase a lightweight stroller with an umbrella to help keep the baby in shade. Also, do not forget to apply sunscreen lotion to keep the harmful sun rays away from the little one’s sensitive skin.

The mother's body after childbirth: What is happening in your body in the sixth week after giving birth?

Using a breast pump

  • Expect to consume about eight glasses of water with plenty of water-packed fruits and veggies in case you are ready to breastfeed the baby. Perhaps, the best time for a feeding session is during the early hours of the day, as that’s when your breasts are fullest. But, what do you do if you need to go out?
  • If you need to be out on any given day or hour, it is always a good idea to use a breast pump and store the milk for the baby’s feeding in your absence. Remember to get it done as per your feeding schedule so that the baby wouldn’t start crying or throw tantrums.
  • Make sure you are consuming foods that will help you increase your milk supply

While you are pumping your breasts, make sure you are quiet and are relaxed. Apply warm compression when pumping the milk and be patient as it might take a few minutes. Also, in case you have a sore nipple after or due to breastfeeding, try to apply a nipple cream. Also, if you often stain your clothes due to overflowing milk, make use of nursing pads.

Wearing a 6-week old baby

Do you often find yourself tied up with a baby and are looking for a way to tag them along while you work? Here’s what you can do:

  • Wear a baby. This the easiest and the best way to soothe a crying 6-week old baby. Keep them close and let them feel comfortable and warm while you are working, hands-free!
  • Use a sling or baby-wearing shirt in order to keep the baby in the front-pack carrier for up to three months as they would need the head support. Also, this is the best way to nurse a six weeks old baby too.

To Conclude

A six-week-old baby in their first month does achieve a few of the many milestones that are worth the excitement and celebration. We are assured that this week helped you be around the baby more at this age and do look forward to spending more time apart from the otherwise busy life. We would want you to take all the necessary steps from now on with regards to the items required for the enhancement of the little one’s motor skills in this and for the coming weeks. Not to forget, take some time off for yourselves too, it’s of utmost necessity and well deserved!

FAQs- Your 6-week-old baby - development and growth

1. What things should a 6-week old baby be doing?

At week 6, the baby may be more adept at feeding in the breastfeeding sessions that would last about 15 to 20 minutes. Also, the bowel movements of the 6 weekers are expected to change significantly.

2. Is my 6 weeks old going through a growth spurt?

Growth spurts happen anytime in the first year but are expected to make their initial spurt between 1 and 3 weeks, while the other is between 6 and 8 weeks.

3. How much should a 6-week old weigh?

Usually, the average weight of a newborn would be around 7 to 7 1/2 pounds, which is 3.2 to 3.4 kg. On the other hand, a full-term might weigh anywhere from 5 pounds 11 ounces to 8 pounds 6 ounces, or 2.6 to 3.8 kg.

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