Learn everything you need to know about your 1 month old baby. Track important developments and milestones such as talking, walking, growth, memory & more.
In the past four weeks, your baby's personality has taken center stage. Now instead of gazing contentedly at you, she's smiling, cooing, maybe even laughing or squealing, which makes blowing raspberries on her tummy or playing a quick game of peekaboo much more rewarding. With ever-improving vision and hearing, she's also absorbing everything you do, which is why experts recommend talking to your baby -- even if all you get in return is a blank stare. As you describe what you're doing ("Time to change your diaper!") and ask questions ("Do you like the blue onesie or the green?"), your baby listens intently, tucks away vocabulary words, and gains a better sense of what to make of the world around her. She'll also feel connected to you, since the sound of your voice was a constant when she was in utero. Silly as it seems, keep chatting and encouraging your little one to experiment with sounds.
Your baby's howls might be ringing in your ears by now, since crying peaks around 6 weeks of age. For most babies, that should mean less fussing going forward. But if your baby's among the one in four who experience colic -- inconsolable crying that can last up to four hours at a time -- you might have to wait a few more months till she truly settles down. While doctors aren't quite clear on what causes colic, they do know you're probably the person best equipped to soothe your fussy baby. Try swaddling, going for car rides, even placing your baby's car seat near a running dryer, where the sound and the repetitive rumble can calm her. Something different might do the trick every time, so keep trying new sob soothers. And remember that this, too, shall pass. For most children, colic slowly dissipates by 9 months.
This month you'll also head in for your baby's first round of immunizations. Frightening as that might seem, rest assured that the Centers for Disease Control has found no evidence of a link between autism and immunizations. And vaccines are integral to keeping both your baby and everyone else's healthy. Still feeling confused? Ask your doctor to explain the purpose and risks of immunizations. Then gear up for the DTaP, rotavirus, Hib, hepatitis B, and polio shots by asking if your little one can nurse while she's injected -- it'll help her stop crying quicker -- or by dosing her with infant acetaminophen either before or after the appointment to ease the pain.
When Baby's 6 weeks old, you'll head in to your ob-gyn's office for a postpartum checkup. She'll check your episiotomy or C-section scar to make sure you're healing properly. If everything's A-OK, she?ll give you the go-ahead for sex -- not that you were necessarily looking forward to that. For some new moms, getting your mojo back after a baby can be difficult, not only because your body feels so different and you're so exhausted, but having a baby clinging to you 24/7 can make the thought of cuddling up to anyone else significantly less appealing.
But don't put off intimacy with your spouse for too long. Studies show that marital satisfaction takes a pretty steep dip after couples have a baby. Why? For starters, you have a lot more to argue about these days (Who'll feed the baby? I did the last middle-of-the-night shift!), and you're running on little sleep most of the time, which makes it harder to be reasonable. Plus, you have much less time for the activities -- everything from travel to movies to dinners out -- that made you connect as a couple before. That means it's important to find new ways to spend time together, whether that's watching a chick flick via Netflix or enjoying candlelit takeout while your baby snoozes in the swing. Even if sex feels uncomfortable or scary, work to find ways to be physically intimate, so you won't drift apart just when you need each other most.