When most babies hit the 6-week-old mark, it feels like an eternity to new parents. You have already gone through the grasping and recognition stages with your new baby. But, each day post-pregnancy and post-birth are filled with new surprises and a fresh set of challenges.
Your 6-week-old baby will have a major growth spurt, which can be overwhelming. Suddenly, your perfect little one is giving eye contact with a familiar face, eating all the time and quickly turning fussy. Many parents are shocked by the sudden growth spurt and may notice clothes getting tighter along with other developmental milestones and challenges.
But do not worry or be anxious about their uneven pattern of infant development! So, let us look at and explore what growth milestones & development your baby will hit at the 6 week age.
6 Week Old Baby Development
You must have noticed that your baby has become more alert and aware over the past few weeks. Well, the 6 week age will take it up a notch and create a new set of growth milestones. Many babies start becoming more interactive and responsive. They start recognizing your voice and will react to it swiftly.
You can increase your baby’s development in socializing skills by playing with them using toys, talking to them, or making funny noises. But, if this does not happen, do not worry or be concerned. Let your baby grow at its own pace and speed.
So, now around six weeks, your baby will have a growth spurt, meaning they start feeding, babys poop more frequently and initiate reacting to certain things. As a result, they may be cluster feeding in the evening and may be fussier or more sensitive. Coupled with the colic peaks around this time, you may have a more difficult or confusing time during the evenings. However, if you are having issues and challenges with your infant’s development stages, connect with your baby’s doctor without notice or waiting for a long time to react and better take medical help.
Read more: How to stop contact napping
6 Week Old Baby Milestones
As the socializing increases in your 6-week-old baby, you will notice your baby’s first smile now. While your baby may have smiled in their sleep, by this week, they should have their first social smile. But in case this does not happen, do not be much concerned or highly anxious. The first smile happens around the 2-month mark.
But, if you want your baby to smile, you could make funny faces or noises around them for responses. As you are your baby’s favourite person right now, only you can make them smile and be happy.
Another milestone that your 6-week-old baby has achieved is that they can distinguish between different loud sounds, and facial expressions and completely recognize your voice at this stage. They are also starting to see more colours and surroundings.
Your baby is also becoming quite equipped with holding small objects in their hands. For example, you may notice that your child is holding a toy or keys or a rattle for longer periods now. Contact doctors to know more about which milestones your infants’ age range is hitting to be completely aware of their behaviour.
6 Week Old Baby Food
At the 6 week age, your baby now has a feeding routine and is getting into the flow of it. Babies at this stage keep eating frequently, but the intervals will start to grow more and more. But all babies develop at different stages. If your child is still feeding frequently, then it is fine.
Breastfed babies might still need to be fed frequently, as it is digested faster than formula. It is generally advised by healthcare providers that you continue to breastfeed your child to keep your milk supply up and ensure the baby is getting enough milk and nourishment.
As your little one is going through a growth spurt, they may seem hungrier than usual. Do not worry, as this is a healthy sign. Your breastfed baby and your body know what needs to be done, so trust the process.
6-Week-Old Baby Sleep
A 6 week old baby will sleep upwards of 15 hours in a day. Your newborn sleep more at night, less during the day, and have a proper bedtime routine as time passes. As time progresses, your baby will sleep more during the night, and their daytime sleep will be divided into 3-4 nap cycles every two hours. While your baby may not be at that stage yet, they are gradually progressing, moving objects towards that. But, as new parents, you may wonder, should I wake my baby up to feed at night?
Most professional American academy advice will tell you that as long as they are gaining weight, you should let them sleep as long as they want. But, if they are still waking up to feed, it is important to let them do that as they still have a lot of growing up to do. If you notice any changes or developmental delay contact your baby’s doctor.
Also read: 8 Month Old Baby Sleep Schedule
6-Week-Old Baby Schedule
Now that your 6-week-old baby has newfound skills and wants to interact more, you need to add more activity time for them. So while your day will still revolve around diaper rash and changes and feedings and rocking a crying baby, there will be moments when your baby would want to play.
Babies love to go out in a stroller and even enjoy tummy time in an activity center. They might start preferring some toys as well. Toys for this adjusted age group are generally brightly coloured or make a noise when squeezed and are just the right size for your baby to grab. If you are worried about your newborn baby’s development, then talk with your paediatrician for support.
6-Week-Old Baby Health and Safety
Your 6-week-old baby will not have another checkup until the 3 month mark, which will be coming up. So, if you have not made an appointment with your doctor, you should schedule it soon.
Vaccinating your Baby on Time –
During the 2-month visit to your healthcare provider, your baby will get its first shots. If your baby has not received their second Hepatitis B vaccination at the 1-month checkups, they will get it in this appointment. Your baby will also get polio, pneumococcal, DTaP, Hib, and Rotavirus vaccines for disease control.
As new parents, you are bound to be worried about the side effects of these vaccines. For example, your baby may have soreness at the injection site and a mild fever. Keep a check on your baby’s temperature and contact your paediatrician for support to understand how to soothe your baby post shots.
6 Week Old Baby Care Basics
At this stage, most mothers/parents decide to return to work. And this is the best time to start the transition. If you are breastfeeding, you can transition to a bottle. Feeding them daily by the bottle is a great way to get them used to it. Also, it is good to start pumping milk and storing it to prepare when you return to work.
Most new moms feel like they are in over their heads and are confused about how to manage to pump milk and breastfeed. It is best to pump between feeds; most parents choose to pump in the morning when they have the most milk production.
Either way, your body will know how much milk to make when you constantly pump while feeding the baby. In addition, you can store breastmilk for a longer time by labelling your milk with the date you pumped it and storing it in the fridge for later use.
Additional Growth Behaviours of Your Baby
At 6 weeks old, your baby is still in a phase where colic, fussiness, diaper rash, breast milk, and crying are still prevalent. In fact, according to peer-reviewed studies, this week is the peak week for colic, so remember to keep your babies away from too much moisture. In addition, your baby will probably be fussy and stressed in the evening or the ‘witching hour. And this can be extremely annoying for most parents. But do not lose hope. You could always try soothing your baby by:
- Drive them around in their car seat
- Try some white noise like a machine or vacuum
It is significant to make sure that both you and the baby take care. Also, sometimes it is imperative to take care of yourself first. If your baby is fed and changed, it is ok to put them in their crib and take a moment to collect yourself before settling your baby. This will surely help both mothers as well as the baby.
Read more: Is your baby fighting sleep
FAQs on 6-Week-Old Baby’s Developmental Milestone
1. What should babies do at six weeks old?
Your baby will start developing a sleep schedule and have a proper feeding plan at this stage. Your baby will also start recognizing your voice and seeing more colours. So, this is a great time to introduce your children to vibrant toys.
2. Why is 6 weeks the peak of fussiness?
The 6-week-old mark is when colic is at its peak. This is why your baby may be extra fussy and constantly crying. Do not worry because this is normal. But, if you do feel apprehensive, retrieve information from your paediatrician.
3. Do babies get fussier at 6 weeks?
Yes, most babies do get fussy at the 6-week age. However, they do develop colic more than normal and are starting to build their sense of recognition. You will soon understand what your baby likes and dislikes to make sure that they are kept happy.
4. How long should a 6-week-old sleep at night?
Most 6-week-old babies or premature babies will start sleeping through the bulk of the night. During this period, they will have a 6-8 hour stretch of sleep.
As a parent from birth to 6 months you may feel an overabundance of impatience, joy, and tiredness altogether at the same time. You may wonder when your little bundle of joy will finally sleep at night, stop being fussy, or stop needing to feed so frequently.
Nevertheless, all these concerns are pretty valid and experienced in most cases. So, it is not straightforward or easy to parent a child, especially a 6-week-old baby. But, if you need to rest and take a breather, do not think you are a bad parent or doing something wrong.
You are trying to cope with the entire situation and make it pretty smoother with your efforts & objectives. If you all the time remain over-stressed, stay unhappy and feel like you will crack open, it is better to consult your family doctor or a healthcare provider for cross-checking postpartum depression condition.
These symptoms can present at any stage of parenting a child. If you have any queries about your baby’s growth, baby names, feeding requirements, or child development, do not hesitate to connect with your paediatrician and take medical help. Hope this blog post has quite assisted you in enabling baby milestones and comprehending their growth patterns, as keeping our content accurate for our readers is always our topmost priority!