Baby Week 2


About your Newborn Eyes

Your baby's eyesight is still pretty fuzzy. Babies are born nearsighted and can see things best when they're about 8 to 15 inches away, so she can see your face clearly only when you're holding her close. Don't worry if your baby doesn't look you right in the eye from the start: Newborns tend to look at your eyebrows, your hairline, or your moving mouth. As she gets to know you in the first month, she'll become more interested in having eye-to-eye exchanges.

All about Your Newborn Head

Chances are that at birth (and for a few weeks after), your beloved baby’s head won’t look like the charming cue ball you’d imagined. In fact, it may be downright pointy or mysteriously misshapen. Or it may look disproportionately huge, be covered with spiky black hair or crusty scales, and sport a soft spot that pulses with every heartbeat.

Soft spot. There are actually two, and they are technically called fontanels. They serve two important purposes: First, they helped your infant’s skull to shift and mold so it could fit through the birth canal and second, they allow room for your baby’s brain to grow rapidly during her first year. The larger and more-prominent soft spot (the anterior fontanel) is on top of your newborn’s head; it’s shaped like a diamond and can be up to two inches across. It’ll start to close when your baby is about six months old and be completely closed by the time she reaches 18 months. The second, posterior fontanel is much smaller and harder to find. It’s on the back of the head, triangular in shape, and only about a half inch in diameter.

Size and shape. At birth, your baby’s head has an average circumference of 13.8 inches and makes up about a quarter of the length of her. If you’ve had a vaginal delivery, especially one in which you had to push for a long time, that head may be pointy or cone-shaped, cone heads round out in a few days or weeks. And no matter its shape, eventually your baby’s head will better match the size of her body.

Hair. Newborn head may be bald or bushy with hair that’s spiky or smooth, dark or light and the hair she’s blessed with at birth may not bear any resemblance to the locks she’ll have as a child, Newborn hair often falls out in the early weeks, and when it grows back, it may be a different color or texture.

Flattening.Placing babies on their backs to sleep greatly reduces the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).The best way to prevent flattening is to makesure your baby gets plenty of tummy time when she’s awake and to vary her sleep position (lay her down with her head at alternate ends of the crib) so she doesn’t always rest on the same side of her head. While most of these flattened areas are minor and go away on their own within a year, others may require treatment with a special helmet or band, which applies gentle pressure to redirect the skull’s growth.

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