11-Week-Old Baby Development

Here's everything you need to know about your 11-week-old baby and the milestones they are facing now—plus physical changes to look out for and ways to improve your own health.

11 week old baby

Your Growing Baby

Blooming social skills

At 11 weeks, your baby is slowly morphing into a social butterfly. With an array of disarming facial expressions at their disposal—frowns, winces, wide-mouthed smiles—they are figuring out how to communicate with you. They might even pause for a second while they're feeding just to give you a grin. They like to play more now, and can fuss if they feel like they're not getting enough attention. This makes it the perfect time to introduce a few activities, such as:

Tummy time
Lie on your back on the floor and have your baby lay on their tummy on top of you. They will naturally want to look at you, so they'll try to lift their head up or even use their arms to push their chest up a bit. (This milestone may not occur until they are 4 months old, so don't worry if it's not happening now).

Home show
Help your baby learn the words for things by gesturing to objects around your home (or office or grocery store) and naming them. Take 15 minutes to give them a guided tour of their environment, and say things like, "This is a doggie," or "See the tulip?"

Reach for the sky
Dangle a bright toy or stuffed animal over your baby's head and encourage them to grab it, making sure they really have to stretch to get it. It's a good infant workout, a way to develop hand-eye coordination, and a chance for them to relish cheers of encouragement.

Health Check

Rumbly tummy

Talk about the high price of gas! When baby's gassy, you usually know it, as they will squirm, scream, or just appear miserable. This can happen when babies gulp down too much air with breast/chest milk or formula—and while it isn't entirely avoidable, there are things you can do to make them feel better. Experts recommend burping a baby twice when you're feeding them—once halfway through (say, when you're moving them from one side of your chest to the other), and once after they finish. Keeping baby relatively upright might also help. If you use a bottle, make sure the nipple is the right size for your child; when it's too small, they have to suck extra hard to get anything out, and can swallow extra air. The same thing occurs when the nipple is too large—the milk gushes out, and baby has to gulp it down. If you're breastfeeding/chestfeeding, try avoiding gas-producing foods (broccoli, cauliflower).

Some parents use anti-gas drops or gripe water to soothe a fussy baby, but most health care providers don't think they work well. A better solution: Bicycle your baby's legs to make it easier for them to pass gas, or place them face-down over your forearm, where the pressure might soothe their tummy. In rare cases, gas can be caused by a digestive problem or an allergy; call your pediatrician if it's severe.

Need-to-Know

Conquer the baby weight

You're probably eager to get your pre-baby body back, but now that you've gotten the OK to exercise again, you've got less energy and you're short on time. What to do? Try incorporating your baby into your workouts. Pop your little one into a front-pack or sling and go for a walk; bundle them into the jogging stroller and go running; or try a parent-and-baby yoga workout. If you can afford it, a number of gyms offer babysitting services, so you can attend a Zumba class while your baby is being cared for. Alternatively, stream a workout over your TV while your baby is dozing at home or bouncing in a swing.

Even those who haven't gained much weight may notice that some spots (belly, hips, breasts/chest, thighs) aren't what they used to be. Whether you're sporting a new tummy pooch or stretch marks on your hips, wear your badge of parenthood proudly. Keep breastfeeding/chestfeeding, which helps you burn calories. And be patient with yourself as you try to work off the baby weight. It took you nine months to put it on, after all, and it might come off even more slowly.

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