Baby's First Month: Growth and Milestones Achieved
July 10, 2024

Baby's First Month: Growth and Milestones Achieved

Congratulations on the first month with your newborn! This early stage is a period filled with growth, development and different baby milestones that might seem subtle but are crucial to note and know. As you navigate the first month of parenthood, witnessing your newborn's rapid development is both exhilarating and daunting. Here's an in-depth look at what you can expect from your one-month-old baby, from physical growth to sensory experiences, and some essential parenting tips. 

Babies’ Physical Growth and Health 

Babies typically gain around 1.5 to 2 pounds and grow approximately 1.5 to 2 inches in length since birth. It's also common for their head circumference to increase significantly. Don't be alarmed if your baby's sex organs appear swollen due to your hormones, which are normal and temporary. 

Your baby's healthcare checks will focus on these growth parameters to ensure they are on the right track. Remember, babies grow at their own pace, so variations are entirely normal. 

Baby Movement Milestones 

In the first month, your baby will mostly exhibit reflexive movements. These are crucial for their motor development: 

  • Rooting and Sucking Reflexes

    These reflexes help your baby feed effectively, whether they are breastfed or bottle-fed. 
  • Startle Reflex (Moro Reflex)

    Your baby will react with sudden movements if they feel like they are falling. It's a protective measure. 
  • Stepping Reflex

    If you hold your baby upright with their feet touching a solid surface, they might make stepping movements. This won't last long, as it typically disappears after the second month. 

Sensory Developments 

At one month, your baby's senses are already actively developing: 

  • Vision

    Your baby will start focusing on objects 8 to 12 inches away and enjoy looking at high-contrast patterns. Your face is their favorite view, one they will begin to recognize and respond to. 
  • Hearing

    Fully developed at birth, your baby will recognize familiar voices, especially yours, and may turn towards sounds.
  • Smell

    A strong sense of smell helps your baby recognize the scent of your breast milk and is comforted by it. 

Baby Milestones to Watch For 

During the first month, your baby will hit several developmental milestones: 

  • Reflexes

    Newborn reflexes like sucking, grasping, and startling are still prominent and are signs of a healthy nervous system.
  • Head Control

    While still limited, your baby will try to lift their head, especially during tummy time. 
  • Social/Emotional

    The first social smiles may appear around this time, a heartwarming sign that they're starting to engage more with their environment. 

Feeding and Sleep Patterns of a one-month-old baby 

Feeding will still be on-demand, roughly every two to three hours, whether you're breastfeeding or formula feeding. Your baby will typically consume about 3 to 4 ounces per feeding. Ensure they're feeding effectively by monitoring their diaper output—expect around five to six wet diapers a day. 

Sleep is still in short bouts—about 14 to 17 hours spread over a 24-hour period, divided between nighttime sleep and short naps throughout the day. Establishing safe sleep habits is crucial; always place your baby on its back in the baby's cradle

How Does Baby Look? 

The appearance of a newborn can sometimes surprise new parents. Babies often have a slightly misshapen head after birth due to passing through the birth canal. This usually corrects itself within a few days. Many newborns also exhibit milia (tiny white bumps) or baby acne due to maternal hormones, which clear up on their own. Another common feature is a slightly jaundiced hue caused by the buildup of bilirubin; this usually peaks around the third or fourth day after birth and gradually improves. If you notice any significant or prolonged changes in your baby's skin color or condition, it is important to consult with your pediatrician. 

Common Health Concerns 

Be on the lookout for common issues like cradle cap, baby acne, or more significant concerns like colic, characterized by prolonged periods of crying. Regular checkups will help address and manage these issues early. 

Tracking Dirty Diapers 

Tracking your baby's diapers is an effective way to monitor their health in the first month. You should see at least five to six wet diapers a day, which indicates that your baby is adequately hydrated. The stools of a newborn will change from the thick, black meconium seen in the first few days to a lighter, mustard color if breastfeeding or a darker stool if formula feeding. The frequency and consistency of their stools can vary widely; however, any signs of dehydration or unusually colored stools should prompt a discussion with your healthcare provider. 

Read our blog to learn more - Baby Poop Color 

More Health Tips for Babies This Month 

Here are some health tips for the first month that can help you ensure your newborn's well-being: 

  • Daily Pediatric Check-ups

    Schedule regular visits with your pediatrician to monitor your baby's growth and development. These checks are crucial to identify any potential issues early.
  • Proper Feeding Techniques

    Ensure that your baby latches on correctly during breastfeeding to prevent nipple soreness and to facilitate effective feeding. If using a baby feeding bottle, choose nipples that mimic breastfeeding to avoid nipple confusion.
  • Sleep Safety Practices

    Always place your baby on their back to sleep to reduce the risk of SIDS. The sleep environment should be firm, flat, and free from soft bedding or toys.
  • Hygiene and Skin Care

    Bathe your baby two to three times a week to avoid drying out their sensitive skin. Use gentle, artificial fragrance-free washes and baby lotions designed specifically for infants.
  • Handling and Comfort

    Learn proper ways to hold, burp, and soothe your baby. Gentle rocking, soft singing, or swaddling can comfort your newborn and help them feel secure.
  • Monitoring Diapers

    Keep track of diaper changes to ensure your baby is hydrated and digesting food properly. Expect several wet diapers a day and regular bowel movements, though frequency can vary.
  • Sun Exposure

    Limit your newborn's direct exposure to the sun. Use protective clothing and shade as their skin is highly sensitive to UV rays, and chemical sunscreens are not recommended for the first few months. 

This first month is just the beginning of a fantastic journey. Each baby is unique, and while milestones provide a guideline, the most important thing is to enjoy the process of getting to know your baby. Keep nurturing, keep loving, and keep learning together!


Do babies know their mom at one month? 

Yes, babies can recognize their mother's voice and smell from birth, which helps them feel attached and comforted. 

What can my baby see at one-month-old? 

At one month old, babies can see objects about 8 to 12 inches away. They are drawn to high-contrast patterns and can see large shapes and faces. 

At what age can a newborn see clearly? 

Newborns gradually develop their vision, but it can take up to 6 months for them to see more clearly and start recognizing detailed shapes and colors. 

What is the first sense a baby develops? 

The first sense that develops in a baby is touch. This sense starts to develop in the womb and is fully functional at birth. 

How can I help my baby develop?

To support your baby's development effectively, engage in activities that enhance both their physical and cognitive growth. Regularly talking and singing to your baby helps foster language acquisition and auditory processing skills. Introducing a variety of toys that stimulate different senses can promote cognitive and motor skills. Additionally, providing plenty of tummy time helps strengthen their core muscles and improves motor development. 

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