5 Months-Week 1

Your Baby

Every day is filled with exciting new discoveries and constant reminders that your baby is preparing to take on the world. About now, your baby's laugh is likely to be the most welcome sound in your home. She's truly learning to communicate with you and others around her.

What fun Mom?Maybe it's a high-pitched giggle or a rumbling belly laugh, but the first few times it erupts from her mouth, your baby may surprise herself. Your positive reactions to her peals of laughter will let her know that she's truly making a joyful noise.

Your baby's increased activities may also account for another major 5-month developmental step: She's starting to sleep on a schedule! Most 5-month-olds are sleeping through the night for about nine hours at a stretch. This means that her daytime sleep is probably more predictable now, two typically morning and afternoon naps that each last for two to three hours.
Keep in mind that your baby may still stir often during the night, make little noises or perhaps even awaken. If she's not fussing, it's best to leave her alone so she can learn to put herself back to sleep. If she can't fall back to sleep on her own, try speaking softly or patting her first. If that doesn't work, lift her out of the crib for a feeding or diaper change, keep the lights low and talk softly and as little as possible. Try not to turn this break into playtime: the more relaxed she is, the more likely she’ll fall back to sleep soon.

Attending to your needs

So you’ve got a baby in your arms, love in your heart and cereal in your hair?

You have discovered that you can multitask, answering the phone while changing baby’s nappy, you have discovered your super powers Mom! A lot of new moms tend to forget about their own needs and become so involved and caught up in baby’s world that they actually get lost in it and lose contact with the outside world. Remember, the happier and more relaxed you are, the more you’ll be able to care for your baby the best way you know how. So go to that beauty spa and treat yourself, buy a new outfit and head to the salon. You’ll treasure it.

Concerns: Baby Constipated

This is a condition where baby stools become firmer and harder and your baby will be uncomfortable or in pain when she needs to empty her bowel. Her bowel movements will not be as often as usual, a constipated baby is an unhappy baby.

When it comes to a baby's bowel movements there's no "normal" number or schedule, only what's normal for your baby. Your baby may pass a stool after every feeding, or wait a day or more between bowel movements. Her individual pattern depends on what she eats and drinks, how active she is, and how quickly she digests her food and then gets rid of waste, you’ll be able to tune in to your baby’s unique habits.

If you're concerned that your baby may be constipated, there are a couple of clues to look for like the following:

  • Less frequent bowel movements than normal, especially if she hasn’t had one in three or more days and when she finally has one, it is accompanied by fussiness and discomfort.
  • Your baby is irritable; constipation could be one of many things that cause this.
  • Baby grunts or moans and has a hard time passing stools and then seems relieved when it finally comes out.
  • Hard stools, little rocks in baby’s diaper definitely suggest that she is indeed constipated.
  • Blood spots/streaks in baby’s diaper, anal fissures could be caused by hard stools (make sure to contact your pediatrician at soonest).
  • Hard abdomen/stomach could be caused by gas or constipation.

What you can try to relieve baby

  • Lay baby on her back, bring her legs up and gently move them in a cycling motion as if she’s riding a bike, stretch them out and bring them up to her chest. Repeat this 4-5 times.
  • Give baby a bath to help her relax then gently massage her stomach in circular movements.
  • Cut back on certain foods if baby is already on solids, e.g. rice cereal and bananas, instead try pears or other strained fruit.
  • A little prune juice can help get things going again but ask your doctor before trying it, as well as increasing baby’s liquid intake.
  • Never insert anything e.g. a thermometer into baby’s anus to induce passing of stools, as this may cause more damage rather than help.

Why is my baby constipated?

  • It could be the formula if baby is bottle feeding, ask your doctor about switching brands.
  • The introduction of solids, don’t be alarmed if baby is lightly constipated after being introduced to solids.
  • Dehydration, if baby is not getting enough fluid she may get constipated.

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Baby Names

SA Support Groups

Common Ailments

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