Babies are strange little creatures. They make weird noises. They look funny and they don't even talk. You may say, "Well of course they are strange they take after their Dad (that's always my excuse.)" True, but some strange things they do are "normal."
Having a handle on which are "normal" weird things and which are "weird" weird things can help you decide when you need to contact professionals for help. It can also help you to confidently tell me to buzz off if they start commenting on something that your baby does that they haven't seen before.
In this particular list we are going to take a closer look at some of the things your baby will do while sleeping. Rest assured there are millions of other things that they do that are mind blowingly strange in their waking hours. Those things will keep you entertained in the waking hours.
First things first about babies sleeping. You have been lied to all your life. Babies don't actually sleep like babies. They do a lot of weird stuff while they are asleep.
You will likely spend a lot of time worrying about the temperature of your new little one. Are they too hot? Are they too cold? How many layers do they need? Why is my baby sweating when we haven't even done our workouts for the day yet? These are all good questions. A baby's head will often become sweaty because they have more sweat glands there. Also, when a baby is sleeping they can't move as much as we do. They can't rollover to find the cool side of the pillow etc. This mean that their head often warms and may get sweaty. If you notice some sweat make sure that the baby is staying hydrated. If you feel like you have correctly regulated the room temperature and have the baby in proper attire for the season yet they continue to sweat excessively then mention it to the doctor at the next baby check-up.
Oh yes, babies snore. They do it adorably, but they do it nonetheless. They especially are prone to their little snores when they have a little bit of congestion. A baby has narrow airways. In addition to that they aren't fully able to do that whole swallowing saliva thing. They have two strikes against them right there. How can they help it?
Try sucking out their noses before bed with what ever booger sucker device you use. That may help them to both sleep better and quieter. During cold season you may want to invest in a humidifier to aid with breathing. Removing possible allergens from your babies sleeping room is another way to try to get ahead of a snoring problem.
As they grow the snoring should subside. If this is not the case with your baby, you will want to check in with your doctor. Worse case scenario they are a lifelong snorer and you have them until they are 18.
A pause in breathing by babies is by far one of the scariest and weird things that you may encounter. As scary as this is, this can be within the confines of normal weirdness. The breathing can pause for up to ten seconds. There is a name for it: periodic breathing. There is a pause in breathing and then faster breathing to "catch up." Eventually going back to a normal pattern.
This happens in premature babies in the first few weeks of life. Some full term babies also have this happen. This should also get better as the baby grows up. Think of it like they are forgetting to breath. This one is particularly touchy because of SIDS so if you find yourself unable to rest for worry about this, invest in a monitor that alerts when the babies breathing halts. Never ever ever shake the baby to get them to start up again.
This is my favorite one. I love to watch babies sleep and twitch. Their little toes twitching or fingers moving. If you do a little tickle on the side of their smile and they give a sweet twitchy smile that melts your heart...that is what dreams are made of. You want to remember that babies are developing their nervous system along with their personalities.
Their little nerve endings are firing off and practicing to someday be able to do make these movements on purpose. Those toes are going to be running away from you soon and they need to practice.
If this ever lasts more than a few seconds then a call to your doctor would be in order. The concern being that a seizure could be taking place.
Yes, it may be gas. It also might be them dreaming about that joke you told last night at dinner. It was a good one. You are right it was gas. When people say kids are angels when they are sleeping, they mean when they smile at you in their dreams. Apparently technically when they are younger than six weeks this smile is like the twitch we addressed in number #12. The smile is like a reflex. If only you could keep that reflex as a teenager, am I right?
Full disclosure: these smiles are not really ever from gas. That is an old wives tale or they are talking about my husband instead of babies. Either way I would be amiss if I didn't correct myself.
You can't get on over on a baby who is sleeping with eyes half open. That must be why you haven't been able to sneak away from their crib while they sleep.
Your baby is not a zombie. It is fairly normal for babies to sleep with their eyes open or partially open. If they eat your eyeballs then you can reevaluate the zombie status.
If you are freaked out by this you can go ahead and gently close the baby's eyes. Make sure not to poke them. Most of all don't wake them while doing it or you will kick yourself so hard.
There is no known reason for babies sleeping this way. Some think it has something to do with being in REM sleep more often. Sleeping with eyes partly open can also be hereditary. Sleep facing your spouse one night and see if you get woken up with screams of terror at your open eyes. If you don't then baby doesn't get it from you.
Baby grunts! These are fantastic. Unless they are poo grunts, then you need to pass that baby post haste. Yes, they can poop grunt in their sleep. That sounds sweet even though it involves poop.
Grunts might also be the result of dreams. Of course we don't know for sure what a baby dreams about. You might think that if they are grunting it has to be a dream about cavemen, but you will be surprised to know that babies don't know a lot about cavemen.
The main point to take away from this is that noises like grunts are common. They are not cause for alarm.
What the heck is the Moro Reflex? So glad you asked. The Moro Reflex is the feeling of falling and then jerking awake. Your baby should have the Moro Reflex. Absence of this reflex in a newborn is abnormal. The doctor will probably check for this when you come in for a your well baby check up. Conversely the presence of this reflex in an adult or older baby is abnormal. The Moro reflex is also referred to as the startle reflex or startle response.
The way the check is to lift the baby's head slightly and release it slightly, catching it and supporting it after. The babies arms will go up and they will startle. They may cry slightly and wake up. Then they will likely fall back asleep.
When you can make it through the night without tooting then you sit up on there on your high horse and judge. Otherwise let that baby gas fly.
There is nothing sweeter than cuddling a sleeping baby only to have them let the loudest little toot go. Then see them wake up from the loud noise. Not to husbands: Not as sweet when you do it.
Obviously the gas is nothing to worry about. The fact that it happens during their sleep is just because they sleep a lot. Babies don't really try to hold in their gas or anything. Therefore they don't have held in gas escaping through the night (like you do in the beginning of your relationships.) To be a baby an not worry about such trivial things.
Wheezing is going to be very similar to the snoring. The difference is that it is going to sound a little more "breathy." That can up the scary quotient if you think the baby is having a hard time breathing.
Try sucking out their noses before bed with what ever booger sucker device you use. That may help them to both sleep better and quieter. During cold season you may want to invest in a humidifier to aid with breathing. Removing possible allergens from your babies sleeping room is another way to try to get ahead of a wheezing problem.
As they grow the wheezing should subside. If this is not the case with your baby, you will want to check in with your doctor.
You ever watch a baby and see them sucking on an imaginary bottle. Did your heart explode with the amazing cuteness that was put out into the universe?
They do that little sucking motion, but there isn't anything there for them to be sucking. It is so sweet. To clarify, this can be an imaginary bottle or boob. We don't what that baby is dreaming about eating.
There is no reason to contact your doctor on this one. Your baby is likely not suffering from schizophrenia or seeing things that aren't there. They are only pacifying themselves in their dreams. Finding things that soothe them back into a deeper sleep.
Baby's squirm. Sometimes when they squirm they wake themselves up. That is such a bummer when that happens.
Squirming can sometimes be helped by swaddling. The theory with swaddling is that in the womb babies don't have much room to move. Therefore to help them adjust to life on the outside we can help by swaddling and keeping their arms close to their sides like they were in your belly.
If you allow them too much room to move they wake themselves up and make themselves very cranky. Check with your doctor on how they feel about swaddling and what ages this is appropriate for.
Baby's have not mastered dealing with saliva yet. You can tell this by the way they have drool running down their chins a lot of the time. This is not just a day time problem.
Gurgling edges itself into night when the baby goes to sleep and there is no where for the baby to store it's spit. This will then occasionally cause noises in their throat as the saliva kind of sits there.
Try sucking out their noses before bed with what ever booger sucker device you use. That may help them to both sleep better and quieter. During cold season you may want to invest in a humidifier to aid with breathing. Removing possible allergens from your babies sleeping room is another way to try to get ahead of a gurgling problem.
As they grow the gurgling should subside. If this is not the case with your baby, you will want to check in with your doctor.
As your baby gets teeth they may grind their gummy mouths to try to ease pain. This is because sometimes pressure on the teeth that are about to poke through can feel good to them.
Another reason for this is that your baby might be getting used to the sensation of teeth in his or her mouth. Night time or asleep time is a busy time for babies. They have nerves growing, reflexes starting, and they are learning new sensations as they sleep.
Teeth grinding as we are adults is bad. You can actually wear down your teeth with this habit. If the grinding does not stop as they get older, you will want to talk to your doctor or dentist about ways to stop this.
Baby's making faces in their sleep are precious. Even when it's like an eye roll. You probably can guarantee that isn't going to be cute forever. That makes it even more important to enjoy it now.
Eye rolling is probably prone to happen during the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage of sleep. Since we have discussed that babies can sometimes sleep with partial or whole eyes open this may look like the baby is rolling their eyes at you. If you are saying something particularly annoying at the time this can even seem like they are for certain getting attitudinal with you. Rest assured this is all a part of your baby learning how to use this new body that they have.
Who could roll their eyes at you on purpose? You are awesome