Having a baby is a huge responsibility, one that would require a lot of tolerance and patience on your part. There is a lot that you would have to deal with and a lot that you would have to take care of. To ensure that you handle this responsibility to perfection, you need to be aware of everything associated with it. One thing that you will notice if you have a newborn is that he outgrows his clothes all of a sudden or his behaviour and mood changes. In all likelihood, your baby has had a growth spurt. Baby growth spurts occur at specific times, and there are certain signs that alert you regarding it. We are going to shed some light on facts associated with growth spurts in babies so that you can recognise it when the time comes.
What You Should Know About Growth Spurts In Babies?
Growth Spurts are during the first few days at home and around 7-10 days, 4-6 weeks, 3 months or more.
1. Number of growth spurts
In the first year, a baby has about five growth spurts. During the first year, the major part of the development of the baby is his growth and by the end of the first year, you will find him quite heavier and bigger than when he was born. During growth spurts, it is not just the height of the baby that increases. He would also increase in weight, and there would be growth in the circumference of his head as well. Head growth occurs most in the first four months of life.
2. Period of growth spurt
While this might vary, in most cases, growth spurts occur at specific periods. The first growth spurt is likely to occur when the baby is two weeks old, followed by one in his third week. The sixth week is the next period for a growth spurt to occur, followed by one in the 3rd and then the 6th month. Keep in mind that this is not fixed. You do not have a reason to be worried if your baby does not witness a growth spurt at the exact time. If he is eating and gaining weight, everything is fine. He will follow his own growth spurt pattern.
3. Length of growth spurt
In young babies, growth spurts tend to last for a few days. However, as the baby grows older, the duration increases and a growth spurt can last for a week.
4. Increase in hunger
One of the most obvious signs of growth spurts in babies is that there is a significant increase in their hunger. You will find that they get hungry with increased frequency. Do not be worried if your baby demands to be fed more than usual since this is normal. He is growing and utilising more nutrition, thereby requiring more food.
5. Change in sleeping pattern
Another important thing that you should know about baby growth spurts is that there will be a change in his sleeping pattern. He might wake up early, demanding to be fed. Some babies also sleep longer during growth spurts as they are utilising all of their energy to grow and require more rest.
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6. Mood swings
During growth spurts, a baby would get cranky quite often. Growth spurts tend to take up quite a bit of energy of the baby, so they tend to be irritable during this phase. They would also get clingier. The increase in hunger is also a reason for the crankiness.
During growth spurts, it is not just the baby who would be going through a change. Due to the increased demand, mothers tend to be quite irritable as well. It is quite common for mothers to contemplate giving up breastfeeding during growth spurts as they feel their milk would not be enough for the baby. However, it is important to understand that the more breastfeeding you will do, the more milk will be produced. A bit of adjustment with the change would be required, but you would be fine with it after a while.
8. Health of the mother
During growth spurts, a baby would require your attention to the maximum. Therefore, it is important for the mother to take care of herself. Mothers need to ensure that they eat regularly and pay attention to their hydration. Get help for other chores so that you can get sufficient time to rest.
Growth spurts last for a few days and thus, there is no reason to feel apprehensive about it.
9. When to seek assistance
Babies would be cranky, hungry, and sleepy during growth spurts, so you shouldn’t be worried. However, there are certain scenarios in which you would have to consult a doctor. Symptoms such as fever, vomiting, or consistent crying should alert you that a doctor needs to be sought.
10. A hard time
Growth spurts tend to be rather hard on both the baby and the parents. Since it is the mother who is feeding the baby and fulfilling his increased appetite, she would feel hungrier as well. The regular feeding sessions would take a lot out of her, and she might feel drained out. This can be a rather overwhelming experience. However, as difficult as it might seem, the time will pass in a few days and a little bit of patience is all that is required.
Be prepared for what lies ahead
Acquiring information regarding the signs of baby growth spurts would ensure that you are prepared for it when it comes. You should endeavour to know more about the requirement of the baby and the experience that lies in wait for you during growth spurts. Read the experiences of other mothers and talk to the mothers around you. This will provide you with an insight into the time that is about to come and would ensure that you are not taken by surprise. Remember that a growth spurt is a significant step in the development of your baby. He requires your care and attention at this time and to provide him with this, you will have to take care of yourself.