9 Weird Facts About Newborns
a few nights ago, my husband and i were reminiscing about those rough first weeks with a baby. we started talking about all the weird facts about newborns we never knew until we had one! because i basically take every (appropriate) conversation i have and think about how to make it a blog post, this too needed to be shared with you. you can thank me later.
1) their nails come out long and sharp
a few moments after our sweet baby was laid upon my chest after birth, she immediately scratched me. i know! i had no idea that those nails grew so much while they were gestating inside the womb. i have friends who have gone a few weeks past their “guess date” and they said the nails were crazy long! tip: use a nail file instead of nail clippers on those flimsy but fierce nails.
2) their soft-spot pulsates
while i did know newborns are born with soft-spots, i didn’t know they would participate in the world. this absolutely freaked us out with our newborn. every time she ate, the soft-spot on the top of her head would pulsate (apparently this spot is called the fontanel and is totally normal to have a dance party atop one’s head).
3) their eyes roll all around
when we went back to see the midwife for our 2 day appointment, this was on my list of “omg what’s wrong with our baby?!” questions to ask. apparently it’s completely normal for their eyes to roll back in their head, go crosseyed or for the eyes to go in two different directions. it’s scary.
4) their skin peels
this was another one on my list of questions! our midwife explained that their skin peels because they go from living in an aquatic environment to an arid one. atlas’ was worse around her wrists, feet and ankles. glad to know she doesn’t regularly shed skin like a snake.
5) their umbilical cord can take 3 weeks to fall off
i always assumed that little nub would fall off in a day or two after she was born. actually – it can take 7-21 days! gross factor – the longer it stays on, the stronger it can smell (and it ain’t like flowers). also, our midwife advised not to bathe her until it fell completely off! i mean, newborns don’t really roll around in mud or anything so it’s not like they need a bath every time. (when the time comes, we loved this tub because it’s transitional).
6) they come out hairy
this one really got me. our sweet atlas had the coolest hobbit hair on her upper ears for the first few months before it fell out! she also had some sweet shoulder hair – check it:
7) they get acne
i always imagined our baby would look like those shiny-cheeked babies you see on the sides of diaper boxes and billboards. wrong! most babies get acne thanks to the mama’s hormones still circulating through their tiny body. it usually clears up on it’s own by 2 or 3 months.
8) they don’t need water
the fact that newborns (or kids under 1) do not need additional water completely blew me away. they get all the hydration they need from breastmilk or formula! i guess i’ll just keep using the adorable water bottle i got her for a while longer…
bonus fact: newborns lose around 7-10% of their birth weight but should gain it back in about two weeks, so don’t panic!
9) their breathing is irregular
as a new parent, this one is especially terrifying. hearing odd noises, wheezes, gasps between breathing makes those already sleepless nights even worse. apparently it’s normal and they are learning to use those lungs! oh and did you know, newborns only breathe out of their nose and not their mouths? #themoreyouknow
so there you have it! 9 weird facts about newborns so that if you have yet to have a child (and choose to have one) you can be slightly more prepared!
if you have a kid, what else would you add to the list? if you don’t, which fact surprised you most?
ps. my husband wants everyone to know that infants can’t have honey until after age 1. “babe! put it in your article! it’s going to save a LIFE!” so, don’t feed your newborn honey.