What No One Tells You about Baby’s First Year

The first 12 months of parenthood are full of challenges and discoveries, and although you may have read all the baby books, there may still be a few unexpected surprises up ahead. Although we aren’t medical experts, we are parents, and here are just a few of the things we wish someone had told us about our little one’s first year. Things like why pretend play is so important and that there’s no need to panic if your baby can’t walk by his first birthday.

Strange breathing

Often, newborns may take slight pauses in breath or go through a period of rapid breathing, which is scary if you don’t know to expect it. For our little one the first six weeks, these types of irregularities are considered normal, but to lessen the risk of SIDS, we put our baby to sleep on his back and keep all soft bedding and toys out of the crib. We also made sure pauses in breath were never be longer than 20 seconds.

The jerks and jitters

Our newborn adjusted to all the new space he had outside of the womb, this is because he was still figuring out how to control his body, so he often made very jerky movements. Some babies have the Moro or startle reflex, which causes them to make sudden, dramatic movements. Not to worry, this will pass after they’re three months old, just as any trembling or quivers will also stop as baby’s neurological system continues to develop.

How babies learn

What lots of new parents may not realise is that play is about more than fun for babies; it’s a key part of their development and how they learn almost all of their key skills, like communication and problem-solving, so playtime should be as stimulating and imaginative as possible. With our little one, this meant using educational toys, pretend play, reading, and music for play that’s creative, diverse and fun; this type of quality playtime did lots lots more for our baby than simply popping the telly on.

Development milestones

There are certain development milestones that every parent looks forward to: the first smile, the first step, the first word. Every baby book out there will give you timeframes for when your little one should hit development milestones during their first year, but we’ve learnt that each baby develops at his own pace. Some babies can stand up at nine months, others can just about sit up without support—that’s just the way it goes, and unless something appears to really be very delayed, our had to learn to relax and just enjoy each phase of your infant’s growth.

To learn more on our play time and eco-friendly educational toys, contact us at the Little Woodpecker today or browse our shop.