Your new baby is very nearly one month old. How has this happened? How has the time flown by so quickly? These are questions you’ll likely be asking for the rest of your life as a parent. But there are lots of other questions you may want answering as you enter week 4 post-birth. Luckily for you, we at My BabyManual are on hand to answer them for you.
What can baby do?
As well as feeding, crying and pooping, your baby can grow, and grow, and grow, and grow. In fact, he is growing at an astonishing rate of around one inch and 200gs per month. To put this into perspective, if he grew at this rate for the next twenty years, he would be 400ft tall by the time he entered his third decade. No wonder he is so hungry!
But he can do much more. His muscles are strengthening, so much so that he may be beginning to lift his head. And be careful what you say: his hearing is developing to such an extent that he may be able to track sounds as you move around the house. His vision is sharpening too. To appreciate this, just watch the way he watches you and the objects you hold.
As he is nearly a month old, he is also becoming familiar. He may recognise your face and voice, and, if he’s very advanced, his own hands and feet!
What about sleep?
There will be little change to baby’s sleep routine during week 4. He will still sleep 16 to 18 hours a day, including long daytime naps. If you are feeling tired, you should take advantage of every opportunity to get some shuteye.
How much is he eating?
Baby will take the lead with both breast and bottle feeding, so you don’t have to worry about whether he is getting enough.
However, if you experiencing any problems with feeding at this stage, it is a good idea to get support now so that you can implement good habits. Talk to your GP and/or health visitor for more information.
Will he ever stop crying?
Crying is still his primary means of communication. However, if he is regularly crying for hours on end without much time to pause, he could be suffering from colic. Colic is very common and affects as many as half of all babies. If you think his excessive crying may be attributable to colic, speak with your GP or health visitor.
Tell me all about poo please
There are no hard and fast rules here, and the frequency of bowel movements will depend on various factors, including whether baby is breast or bottle fed. He could go once a day, he could go nine times a day. If you have any concerns, speak with your GP or health visitor.
How Will Mum Feel Week 4 Post-Birth?
Unless you are incredibly lucky, the first answer is “sleep deprived”.
The good news, however, is that your hormonal activity is now beginning to become less volatile and the baby blues should be fading. However, according to charity 4Children, around 3 in 10 mothers experiences postnatal depression. If your mood is troubling you or something simply doesn’t feel right – perhaps you have become anxious or preoccupied in a way that disturbs you – you should speak with your GP, health visitor or mental health professional.
Find out more about what to expect in week 5.