That first month with your newborn can be delightful, but it can also be difficult, especially if you are a first-time parent. Your baby is just getting to know this big, strange world, and you are just starting to learn how to take care of his constant needs.
Pretty much, all he will do is eat, sleep, poop, and cry, but soon a great personality will emerge. Some of the most notable 1 month old milestones will include smooth body movements and better coordination (especially when gripping your thumb or putting his hand in his mouth). You will also notice that he looks at you when you hold him or listens when you speak.
It is worth noting that babies who were born prematurely will not follow these milestones exactly. For instance, those who were born a month earlier will likely take an additional month to hit these milestones.
What You Should Know
- Your baby’s world is your world too. While your child was still in the womb, he used his senses to know you and the surrounding environment. Still, he uses his senses now to communicate with you. Listen closely. Learn his method of communication.
- We all love to be touched. Babies love it too. Give your newborn lots of skin-to-skin – hold him, rock him, or just give him a gentle massage. This will not only make your little one feel comforted but also loved and cared for.
- Exercising is important for the baby. Make sure to move his legs in cycling motion for a few minutes every day to tone his muscles. This will make his legs flexible, which will prepare him for crawling.
- Newborns sleep up to 18 hours a day, two, three, or sometimes four hours at a time. Make sure you are feeding yours on a constant schedule so you can establish a consistent sleep routine.
The Most Adorable 1 Month Old Milestones
If you are a first-time parent, you may be wondering, “What milestones should a 1 month old have?”
Well, you see, life in the first month is pretty simple for the baby. All that matters to him is sleeping safely, eating often, having a dry diaper, and receiving lots of love. Put cleaning, laundry, and other house chores on hold and focus on the infant’s needs.
Some of the milestones you will observe in the first month include changes in body weight and length, improved senses, and strong reflex movements. We have discussed these below in detail.
1. Baby Weight And Length
According to WHO, the average weight for a one month old is 9.9 pounds for boys and 9.2 pounds for girls, while the average height (length) is between 45 and 60 cm. But genetic makeup, gender, and many other factors may affect your baby’s weight and height, so the most important thing is to make sure your baby is growing at a healthy rate.
The baby may lose some weight in the first few days of his life, but this should not be a cause for alarm. When a baby is born, he usually has extra body fluid and can typically shed close to 12% of his original weight before stabilizing and gaining more weight.
By the time a child is two weeks old, he should be back to his initial weight, and this happens pretty fast during the first month. Your doctor will check how much weight the baby has gained along with other 1 month old milestones during your baby visits to ensure that your little one is growing as he should.
Speaking of, growth can be measured in weeks or months. Some parents may ask, “Is my baby 4 weeks old or 1 month?”
Okay, if the month has 31 days, then your bay should be 4 weeks and 3 days. If it is a 30-day month, then your baby should be 4 weeks and 2 days. February is the only month with exactly 28 days, so you can comfortably say that your baby is 4 weeks old except in leap year when the month has 29 days, hence your baby would be 4 weeks and 1 day.
2. The Five Senses
Babies develop their sense of hearing while still in the womb at 35 weeks, so by the time he is one month old, his hearing is fully developed. He may turn towards familiar voices and sounds like when you sing, laugh, or make any loud sound that attracts attention.
Initially, the clarity of the sound may be affected by the fluids in your baby’s ears, so sometimes he won’t respond when you call especially if you are not loud enough. For your child to hear things clearly, the part of the brain involved in sound processing has to be fully developed, and this won’t happen until he is 7 months old.
In the first month, your baby’s sight is a little blurry but he can still be able to see close-up objects, especially those in black and white patterns and other contrasting colors. His range of vision is usually about 8 to 12 inches, so you got to hold the objects close enough to keep the baby entertained.
You may notice that the baby’s eyes sometimes cross too, but this should be nothing to worry about. Babies’ eyes cross because the muscles involved in controlling the movement of the eye are not completely developed yet. By the time the baby is about 3 to 4 months old, the eyes will generally right themselves.
Your baby’s sense of taste is extremely developed at 4 weeks. He can tell the difference between sweet and bitter, with his preference leaning towards the sweet stuff like the formula and breast milk.
Soon after his arrival, your child will develop a sense of touch. Through touch, he will learn the softness of your hands and how rewarding skin-to-skin contact is.
As soon as your baby is born, he will recognize your scent.
3. Motor Skills
Your baby’s nervous system is still developing but he can accomplish a lot during this first month. Right from the day he steps into this world, your baby has several innate reflexes that help keep him safe and get things done including:
- Rooting reflex that helps him find the breast or feeding bottle
- Sucking reflex that helps him eat
- Palmar reflex that makes him close his fist around your finger when you put it inside his palm
- Moro reflex (the jittery or jumpy reaction your baby has when excited or startled)
Another 1 month old baby activity that is so prominent is the newborn’s instinct for walking. Even at this age, if you put him on a flat surface while supporting his body, he will appear to step forward.
Your baby can do quite a lot in the first month that you may wonder, “Can he play any games?” or “How can I entertain my 1 month old?”
Babies love to play, no matter the age, and there are several things you can do to keep your 1 month old entertained. For instance,
- You can talk to him about what is happening around them. “Do you want to feed?” “Do you want to change your nappy?” “Let’s get you some milk.”
- Make baby noises together. This will encourage him to listen and make conversations.
- Sing and make faces, all while maintaining eye contact.
All these activities will keep your little one entertained and help him develop his senses quickly. Also, remember to lay your baby on their front for a few minutes daily; it helps strengthen their shoulder and back muscles.
Your 1 Month Old Food
Babies eat a lot in the first few weeks and yours is still probably feeding every 2 or 3 hours if you are giving them breast milk or every 4 to 5 hours if you are feeding them baby formula. If you are a first-time parent, you may have many questions in your mind regarding baby food, when to feed your newborn, what quantity is the most appropriate, and so forth. But don’t you worry; we have answered some of these questions below for you. Read on!
How Many ML Should A 1 Month Old Baby Drink?
A 1 month old baby should drink between 570 and 900 ml of breast milk per day. But really, you don’t have to worry too much about how much you baby suckles especially if he is getting the milk straight from the breast. Your baby will stop and move away from the breast when he is full.
How Much Formula Should A 1 Month Old Be Getting?
Your 1 month old should be getting a 4-ounce bottle of formula every 4 hours. You can do either just breast milk or just formula or a combination of both.
If you are wondering, “How much should a 1 month old eat when taking both breast milk and formula?” know that you should continue feeding your baby whenever he seems hungry. This should be easy if you already know how to tell if the baby is hungry. How you alternate breast milk and formula is totally up to you. The most important thing is ensuring that your baby is fed properly.
1 Month Old Sleep
Like eating, 1 month olds sleep a lot, well, just not when you need them to! Typically, a newborn will sleep about 16 to 18 hours a day. It can be 2 to 3 daytime naps and 8 to 9 hours of sleep at night, but how all is split up depends on the baby.
How Long Should A 1 Month Old Sleep At Night Without Eating?
A newborn can sleep up to 3 hours at night without eating. If you have been tracking your 1 month old baby activity keenly, you will notice that your little one will likely sleep longer in the first hours of the night. The first part of his sleep can last up to 5 hours. After that, he may wake up to feed every 2 or 3 hours. Sometimes even after just an hour!
Should I Wake My 1 Month Old To Feed During The Night?
No, you should not wake your 1 month old to feed during the night, unless he hasn’t gained back his birth weight yet. You want your baby to sleep, and if you wake him up, you may not be able to get him back to sleep again. Always make sure your baby has fed enough during the night so you don’t have to wake him for nighttime feedings.
If you have any sleep concerns, discuss them with the pediatrician. He will give you personalized advice, but in reality, you can remedy most of these issues yourself. For instance,
- If your 1 month old isn’t sleeping: There can be a host of reasons your newborn won’t sleep. He could be uncomfortable, hungry, overstimulated, or just want to cuddle. Here are some tips on how to get baby to sleep that you could try, and if they don’t work, then you can go ahead and seek professional advice.
- 1 month old sleeps all day: In the first few weeks, some babies can’t tell days from nights. Others may have a condition that is making them sleep more, while some may just be extra sleepy. Find out why your baby is sleeping more than usual and then decide whether it could be a cause for alarm. Otherwise, if your child is feeding right, pooping and peeing enough, and hitting all 1 month old milestones effectively, then probably there should be nothing to worry about.
Bathing A 1 Month Old
Bathing could be part of your evening ritual but pediatricians don’t recommend bathing babies daily. Exposing your little one to water excessively can dry up his skin, worsening conditions like baby rash and eczema. On the other hand, not bathing him regularly enough can worsen eczema and cause other infections.
So how many times do you bathe an infant?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, you should bathe an infant 3 times a week until he is 12 months old. Of course, the more babies grow, the more mobile and messy they become, and that may sometimes require an extra bath. But generally, 3 times a week is enough as long as you are cleaning your baby’s diaper area properly every time you change his diaper.
Important Tip: Make sure you are using a mild baby soap to bathe your 1 month-old, as his skin is still quite delicate.
How Do You Clean Your 1 Month Old Between Baths?
When you forego your shower, you still apply deodorant, right? Well, some parts of your baby need daily attention too, whether they are getting a full bath or not.
Ensure that the diaper area gets a good cleaning, especially after removing a poopy diaper. For boys, retract the foreskin gently and clean the area beneath it. For baby girls, making sure you are giving more attention to the skin folds around the vagina.
Follow it up with a nice smear of baby lotion. This is especially important if your baby is showing signs of eczema or you or his siblings have eczema. Daily application helps soothe the baby’s skin, prevent eczema outbreaks, and lessen inflammation.
When To Take Your 1 Month Old Out
If you are wondering, “Can I take my one month old outside?” know that you can take an infant outside right away as long as you are following basic safety precautions.
Getting out and especially being outside in nature is rewarding for both babies and parents. It is an amazing 1 month old baby activity, and even though your newborn may not see or hear much, just like adults, the natural environment will help him relax. Also, fresh air and sunlight help boost mood, energy, and vitamin D, all of which are essential for you and baby.
When taking your baby outside, follow these simple tips:
- Limit direct sun exposure: Babies are more susceptible to sunburns. Apply sunscreen on your baby’s body and keep direct sun exposure at 15 minutes max.
- Keep germy hands away: Keep other children’s hands away from your baby’s face and mouth. Also, it would be wise not to allow strangers to hold or touch your baby.
- Mind the weather: Do not overdress or underdress your baby when going outside. Bundle him up in layers so you can add or remove layers when temperatures change and bring a blanket and an umbrella just in case.
My Babies Planet Overview
The first 4 weeks with a brand new baby are blissful but can be quite overwhelming for first-time parents. This guide is just a preview of your 1 month old baby activity, to remind you just how far you two have come!
Enjoy these stages and don’t be afraid to talk to your pediatrician if something seems off. And remember, every child hits his milestones differently, so dot worry if yours hasn’t achieved all milestones yet.