Newborns are adorable. They are cute, small and cuddly. Parents wait 9 months to bring these little ones into the world, so they can shower them with all the love and affection in the world. As sweet as they are, newborns are hard. It is one of the most difficult stages when someone is raising children and that is because they need constant care.
Newborns need to be held, fed and have their diaper changed about a hundred times a day. This means that mom is going to get very little sleep in this stage and that can make it hard to deal with anything. As much as everyone loves a newborn, we are happy when that stage is over. But, when does that stage end? Some say it ends when the baby turns three months old, but it is not always that easy. Others say that it is more developmental and less about their age. When a baby can do certain things, or stops doing certain things, is when they are deemed an infant and not a newborn.
We are going to go through 20 things a baby does when they are not a newborn anymore. If the baby does at least half of these things it is safe to say the newborn stage is over.
20 Hold Their Head Up
Once you bring that little one into the world you will receive a lot of information from your nurses. Especially if this is the first baby. Nurses are your best friends when it comes to learning how to care for a new little baby and the biggest piece of advice they are going to give you is that you have to support their heads.
Baby’s have big heads, I mean heavy heads, and they don’t have the muscle strength to hold it up on their own at birth.
It takes time and muscle development for this to happen, but when it does your baby is probably not a newborn anymore.
19 Sleep More (Maybe)
If we asked a bunch of new moms what the worst part is of having a newborn, chances are most of their answers are going to be that they don’t get enough sleep. Newborns need to eat often as their little belly is very small, which means they are feeding around the clock. They also tend to come into this world with their days and nights mixed up and it can take a while before they figure it out.
When a baby is no longer a newborn there is a great chance that they will start sleeping for longer stretches at a time and it will happen at night time.
This means that mom is going to get more sleep as well.
18 Mom slows down the social media updates
Sometimes there are things that mom does differently that can tell you if your baby is no longer a newborn, so we need to add a section in here about that because chances are mom hasn’t even noticed.
When mom has a newborn, she is obsessed and for good reason.
Add in the popularity if social media and the evidence of her obsession is all over the place.
Mom will take a lot of pictures of her baby and she will share them all over Facebook and Instagram. This will drive her friends nuts, but it will also slow down at some point. It will likely slow down when her baby is no longer a newborn.
17 They Cry Differently
Newborns cry a lot and that is because they have no other way of getting your attention to tell you that they need something. Now, when they are not a newborn anymore they still cry but it will be a bit different. At this point, mom will be able to learn the difference between cries. A newborn’s cry sounds the same no matter what they need or want.
When they are a little older, or out of the newborn stage, they will cry different for different reasons.
Mom will quickly know what her baby wants when she hears the crying starting. This does tend to make like a little easier as it takes away a lot of the guessing involved with caring for a newborn.
16 Baby Has A Routine
We all receive a lot of advice when we become parents and the one that is at the top of the list is to make sure you set a routine and a schedule. That this will make your life a lot easier, and it will. However, it is pretty impossible to set a routine with a newborn, they are so unpredictable.
Most of the time, a routine will just happen naturally. It will happen before you know it and with very little effort from you.
If you suddenly realize that your little one is doing things at the same time every day, then they are not a newborn anymore.
15 The Startle Reflux Is Gone
There is one thing about newborns that breaks my heart and that is the startle reflux. Babies when they are just born will often flail their arms and legs out as if they think they are falling. The truth is that they do. This is why it is so important to swaddle your newborn, this will help calm them and may even help them sleep longer as the reflux can sometimes wake them up.
This will disappear, and when it does your little one is not a newborn anymore.
A lot of parents are relieved when this end because it can break your heart to see them scared whenever it happens.
14 Baby Can Roll Over
When you have a baby, everyone will tell you how important it is to let them spend some time on their tummies throughout the day. This helps their little muscles grow stronger and helps them reach a lot of milestones. This is done when the baby is a newborn and it can help you determine when your little one is not a newborn anymore.
When your little one is not a newborn anymore they can roll over.
All of that tummy time suddenly seems worth it as they have just learned their first skill. It won’t be long until they are crawling and walking. Your little one is growing up right before your eyes.
13 A Little (Or A Lot Of) Personality
It may not seem like it, but our newborns are growing and learning every day. They are a sponge, and they are soaking up everything around them. When they are no longer a newborn they will seem like a completely different baby. They will start being silly. You will start to see a personality emerging and that is thanks to all the learning they have been doing.
When babies are no longer newborns they are learning about cause and effect. They know that when they do certain things, mom smiles and laughs, so they do it over and over again to get the same reaction. It is one of the best stages of development.
12 Eats Quickly
So much of mom’s time with a newborn is consumed with feeding. Whether it be breast or bottle, mom will spend a lot of time feeding her little one. She may even begin to feel like she is just a feeding machine to her little one and not much else. Newborns feed often in the beginning, their tummies are so little, and they empty quicker.
As baby exits the newborn stage, feedings will get a lot shorter. They have become a more experienced eater and they know what they are doing. They are also starting to get interested in other things, so they want to get the feedings done as soon as possible so they can get back to other, more stimulating, activities.
11 Baby Handles Going Out Well
A lot of new moms are hesitant to take their little ones out into the real world. They worry about germs, the weather and how their little one will handle it all. Newborns are unpredictable, and it is impossible to know how they will react when out in public. If baby doesn’t handle it well it can cause some anxiety in mom. To avoid this, mom just doesn’t go out at all.
When the baby is not a newborn anymore, mom will start to venture out further and further from home. She will notice that her baby is handling it very well and even seems to be enjoying herself as well.
10 Fewer Diapers
Other than feeding, the thing parents do the most with a newborn is change their diaper. It seems like they are changing it every hour and it all piles up. When the baby is no longer a newborn, they will go through fewer and fewer diapers. It will take their body a lot longer to process food and turn it to waste. A newborn’s little body is quite efficient.
They also won’t complain about a diaper as much as before and are better able to handle being in a damp diaper. Their diapers are also bigger, so they are able to hold more before they bother the baby.
9 Baby Lets You Cook! (Entertains Alone For Longer)
A newborn life is a busy life and mom may find herself short on time to do anything. The last thing on her mind is going to be to cook dinner. As her baby exits the newborn stage she will notice that she is able to cook dinner or get a couple chores done. That is because as the baby ages they start to let mom do these things.
They will reach an age where mom will be able to place them down for a longer period of time without them crying. Newborns have to be held pretty frequently and will protest loudly when placed down for too long. A baby who is no longer a newborn will allow mom a few more minutes to get things done.
8 Hello Solid Foods
A newborns source of food is always going to be breastmilk or formula, those are the only two choices when it comes to feeding your baby. As they get older they will be able to start eating solid foods in pureed form. When your baby is finally doing this, you can know for sure that they are not a newborn any longer.
Most doctors recommend introducing solids between 4-6 months. Breastmilk and formula should still be their main source of food until the age of 1, but when the spoons are ready than your little one is not a newborn and they are growing up.
7 Here Comes The Laugh!
There are sounds in the world that we all love. The sound of birds chirping, our favourite song on the radio and the voices of those we love. Another sound that everyone loves is the sound of that first little giggle from the baby. Once your baby is no longer a newborn they will start to giggle.
The ability to laugh and giggle will normally show up somewhere between 4-6 months. It will be random, and it will become the best day of your life. There is nothing like the sound of your baby laughing as it tells you that you are doing something right and that your baby is loved.
6 Trying To Talk To You!
If you truly wan to know if your baby is no longer a newborn than you have to look no further than their development. Their development can tell you a lot when it comes to where they are on the newborn vs. infant scale. Another skill your baby will develop when they are no longer a newborn is the ability to talk to you.
We don’t mean talk in full sentences of course, that takes a couple years more, but they will start to babble. More importantly, they will look as if they are trying to tell you something. They will look as if they are wanting to communicate with you. As if to say, ‘look at me mom, I’m all grown up!’
5 Is Baby In Bigger Diapers?
It is probably common sense that when babies get older, they get bigger. All of that food and love allows them to grow and thrive. As the baby grows in size, so will their diapers and sometimes you can tell your baby is not a newborn anymore because they are in bigger diapers. Diapers are made in sizes based on your baby’s weight.
Most newborns are either in newborn size diapers or size 1. Once they graduate over to size 2 they are most definitely not a newborn anymore. This one is a little tricky because some babies are just naturally bigger, so it is important to look for other clues on this list.
4 Baby Lets You Relax
Having a baby can make anyone a little anxious, especially mom. They don’t do this intentionally, they have no idea what they are doing, but it happens. Mom is consumed with making sure they are fed, dry and happy. She is often a ball of worry and fear. When mom wakes up one day and discovers she has a sense of calm and relaxation than her baby is probably not a newborn anymore.
Once the baby gets out of the newborn stage, there is a pretty good routine going down and mom has a handle on things. Her baby is predictable and not so ‘needy’ anymore. She will find herself relaxing more and more every day.
3 Baby Likes The Bath
Newborns are very picky and temperamental. They should be, they are brand new and they need time to adjust to this new world full of new sights, smells and sounds. Not a lot of newborns like taking a bath. They don’t like feeling exposed and if the water is not the perfect temperature they can get pretty grumpy. This will pass, and it will normally pass when they are no longer a newborn.
Soon will come a day when they will love to get in that bath tub. This is mostly due to the fact that they can use their arms properly now and they will love to splash in the water.
2 The Car Seat Got Heavier All Of A Sudden
Most newborns come home in those little car seats. The ones that are easy to carry and transport from place to place. They are so convenient and easy to take your little one in and out of the car. You may notice this car seat start to get a little heavier, where it is almost impossible to carry out the door. This means your little one is not a newborn anymore.
Those bucket seats are convenient, but this is probably the time parents will switch to one that stays in the car and just starts lifting their little one in and out and transferring to a stroller. You may even tear up at the realization that time is just passing you by and your little one is growing up.
1 Start The Drool!
Newborns may spit up a lot, and that is a mess to take care of, but they don’t really drool. Once your little one has passed the newborn stage they will become drool machines, and this is for a couple of reasons. As they enter the infant stage they will start talking and laughing more and this will cause more saliva that they don’t really know how to swallow yet.
Some babies start teething at around 3-4 months of age and teething can cause babies to drool. Don’t worry though, because now you can use all of those cute bibs you have been storing away.
References: Pop Sugar