Babies are super cute and kind of weird. Below are some things about babies that you may not have known about.
1. They do not have tears.
Yes. Babies do cry, but you usually will not see any tears if you look at their eyes. They are not fake crying at all. The tear ducts of a baby are not fully developed, and they only have enough tears to keep their eyes moist and healthy, but not enough to let tears fall. You will only start to notice teardrops around the four-week-old mark.
2. They are natural empaths.
If only the world were like babies. There is a study out by the University of Washington that states that infants are naturally empathetic. The study showed that a hungry infant would give their food to a hungry stranger. When a baby is six months old, they will return your smiles and get distressed when you stare at them without an expression. By ten months old, they will show concern when their mom is upset.
3. When a baby cries, it does it with an accent.
Even though a baby may not be able to form words, studies have found that babies will cry with the same type of melody used in their native language, which is done by the second day of life. Babies will hear and then mimic the sounds that they hear while in utero. The first cry that your infant makes will have a hint of their mother’s native language. When your infant hears your speech patterns and, in turn, will vocalize it with its first cry. The fetus is able to recognize the voice of the mother by the 3rd trimester.
4. They can only see and focus up to 12 inches from their face.
Do not panic if you find out that your infant is nearsighted. That is entirely normal. Their normal vision is between 20/200 and 20/400. When the eyes start to work together, the ability to focus will improve, and the baby can see further away. Infants will not have depth perception and cannot see in 3D until they are five months old.
5. Babies only see in black and white.
One of the reasons that many baby toys are black and white, even though most parents pick the colorful ones, is that babies only see in black and white for the first three months of life. Babies begin to see some color around one week old, but they have a somewhat developed color vision range by six weeks.
6. The first poop of a baby does not smell.
Bacterial waste from digesting food is what causes the smell in poop. A baby’s bowels are not full of bacteria when they are first born, and it takes time for the bacteria to develop. Their first poop is made up of meconium which is a light color and tar-like. After the third day, a baby will have a yellow-green to yellow poop. When the bacteria increases, so will the smell. However, a baby that is breastfed will have less smelly poop. It is usual for a baby to poop up to 12 times per day, especially if being breastfed. They should not poop less than three times a day because it could mean that they are not getting enough milk.
7. They are not able to taste salty foods until five months old.
Even though most studies of infants are done by evaluating their facial expressions, as far as anyone knows, infants may be able to taste salt, but there is no strong reaction to salty flavors. Once infants can talk, then we will know why. However, one study offers a small clue. It was found that infants who had starchy table foods before they reached six months old ended up having a preference for salt that lasted through their early years. The ones who also ate starchy foods, such as cereal, fries, bread, etc., preferred saltier drinks and ended up drinking 55% more of those drinks during the study at six months old.
8. They often prefer similar foods to what the mother ate during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.
The development of the sense of taste happens while during pregnancy because the flavors will be transmitted through the blood within the amniotic fluid. By the end of the pregnancy, the baby will swallow around a liter of amniotic fluid each day, and if you are constantly snacking on chocolate cupcakes all the time, then you may end up giving your infant a sweet tooth.
9. They will have hair color that changes.
Do not get attached to the color of an infant’s hair. The truth is that it will most likely change. Do not get attached to an infant’s hair because it could fall out, which makes your baby bald, just like other newborns out there. These are completely normal responses to being born. Like mothers who have fantastic hair during their pregnancy and end up losing hair after the baby is born, a baby will do the same because of falling hormones. The time that it happens is based on the baby. Plus, the hair color is based on genetics.
10. They will have skin that peels off.
That does not mean that a baby has dry skin. The peeling skin is because of pregnancy. A baby is in amniotic fluid for nine months, and they will not have a lot of vernix or the white stuff found on newborns, which means that they will end up peeling. Because a preemie tends to have a lot of vernix, they do not end up peeling as much as a full-term baby. The skin will end up peeling between 1 week and three weeks after being born. The good thing is that you do not need to worry, apply lotion or even call your doctor.