Babies: 0 - 3 Months

Over vs Understimulating Baby

First time Mom here. I have a 2.5 week old and I'm not sure if I'm doing too much or too little play/eventful time with my baby. We've only been out of the house 3 times since we brought her home, and that was to go to the dr and back. Besides that, we started doing tummy time, have went for a short walk outside once, and have had family visit a handful of times since we've been home. She seems to do better on quieter days with less activity, but I worry I'm not doing enough with her then. 

Re: Over vs Understimulating Baby

  • You're doing great! At this age, they don't need purposeful "stimulation". Feed her, hold her, talk to her, sing to her, and just love on her. Supervised tummy time is also great. But really, at this age, so many things are so new, they're really working on regulating their body and attachment. If you notice she does better on quieter days, then try some more calm days. I think a day where she eats and sleeps, you maybe sing a song or two, maybe read a book, talk to her and smile at her, and give her cuddles is perfect at this age. When you feed her, look at her and let her look at you- no phone scrolling (you're working on attachment, social emotional development, visual development, self-help skills). Talk, read, and sing (you're working on cognitive and language development)- but just a book or two or song or two a day is fine at this point. And some tummy time- if your baby only spends time in a "container" when they're in a car seat while driving you're fabulous (no need for baby swings, rockers, etc., or exersaucers, walkers, or jumpers as they get older)- either hold her, put her on the floor, or have her in her crib or bassinet and you're working on motor skills. And lots of sleep :-) (also a self-help skill). You are definitely doing enough at this age.

    (for context, I'm an early intervention teacher for infants and toddlers)
  • edited September 2022
    Totally agree - as a mom of 4, I can say there's not a ton to be done in the first few weeks in terms of 'entertainment' - going for walks, a little "tummy time", talking to them, and looking at (i.e., letting them look at faces) them is great for what they need. Newborns mostly just want to focus on sleeping, feeding, and growing.

    I found a lot of this phase is about setting up your own routines and getting used to having a baby in the house. You're doing great!   
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  • First time mom here with a 7 week old. I felt the same exact way in the beginning. Even now I can feel like she's "bored", but after a ton of research, the beginning is a lot of the same activities that seem repetitive to us but baby loves it: eat, sleep, potty, stare, and fidget. Making sure they eat and sleep enough takes a lot of their time but you can also use black+white imagery and give them little "massages" to encourage movement. I also try to talk to my baby about what I'm doing or what they're doing, and my baby loves when we make sounds to each other like "eee, ooo, baaa". You're not "doing it wrong" if you don't do all the same things you read. Like the other mother was saying, they are processing so I like to create consistency by saying "up" before I pick them up and asking them of they want to be picked up when they cry. This way it's something they can come to expect as their neurons connect. You're doing amazing mama, so don't stress things. Whatever feels natural for you is most likely perfect. 
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