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3 to 4 months old

Katie de Klee
How your baby will grow and develop, some great tips and what to expect from the month ahead.
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What’s happening now:
  • Your baby is laughing.
  • Sleep patterns are slowly falling into place (sometimes very slowly!)
  • Hand-eye coordination skills are developing.
  • Your baby’s neck is getting stronger.
  • You’re getting the hang of motherhood.
How your baby is developing:
Your baby will start developing a good sense of humour round about now: if you make faces or blow against their tummies you can hear them laughing in delight – a wonderful sound!

As your baby’s brain develops, the innate reflexes they were born with start to fade. Hand-eye coordination advances and you will see that your baby is getting better at swiping at things. Your baby will start to ‘find their own hands’ and put them into their mouth. When lying on their tummies, 3-month-old babies are able to lift their heads up for short periods of time. Another great development is that as your baby’s tummy grows you will need to feed less often. This also means they are more likely to sleep longer – for about six hours a night, if you’re lucky – as they don’t wake up hungry so often.

Tips for you this month:
More sleep at night will no doubt come as a relief. If you hear your baby cry in the night, try to resist the urge to rush to them immediately – sometimes babies wake and cry for a few seconds before falling asleep again naturally.

You will have become a pro at noticing if your baby is unwell, as you know them better than anyone else at this stage. If your baby is irritable and hot, they may have a temperature. A normal temperature is between 36 to 37.5 °C, and anything higher than that is considered a fever. It is normal for a baby to develop a fever within 48 hours of an immunisation, but if they have a fever that doesn’t pass, or you notice they are lethargic and feeding poorly with the fever, contact your doctor.

It’s a good idea to keep a small supply of basic medication like a thermometer, plasters, liquid painkillers (baby ibuprofen or paracetamol), antiseptic cream and natural oils for dry skin in your home. Keep them up high where your child or older children cannot reach them, and be sure to note down what is used when. Some Moms find it helpful to write down dosage instructions on a sheet of paper which they stick to the inside of their medicine cabinet, so they don’t have to search for the information when they’re in a hurry.

This month’s To Do list:
  • Make an appointment for your baby’s 14-week immunisations.
  • Look into using a breast pump – it can make expressing milk much easier.
  • Find a babysitter and go out for an evening with your partner.
If you have 5 minutes…
Mom’s top tip.
Now that your baby is able to sleep for longer periods, it’s a good idea to differentiate between daytime and night time. During the day, play games with your baby that stimulate and excite them, but at night tone down the fun and make sure all activity takes place in a semi-darkened room without any distractions. Once your baby recognises that daytime is fun and when it’s dark nothing much happens, it may be easier to get them to sleep at night.

Curious about next month? 
Click here to find out what happens next month… And the month after.

Share your thoughts and concerns.
Chat with other Moms in your area or at the same developmental stage as you in BabyGroup Forums.

BabyGroup says…
This article has been checked by Heather Wood, Nursing sister, Midwife and Lactation Consultant. A member of the BabyGroup Medical Council.

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