Infant Development

Newborn to 1 year

Newborn Characteristics

Physical Characteristics of Newborns

Hair- Some babies are born bald while others have a full head of hair.

Eyes- Their eye color may change several times before they stay the same.

Skin- Their skin may appear to be pinkish in color.

Umbilical Cord- Sticky material will collect at the base of your babies cord stump. Keep it clean and allow air to get to it.

Feet- Don't worry if their feet look pigeon-toed. They will relax into a straighter position after about 6 months.

Newborn Reflexes

- Blinking their eyes

- Following movement with eyes

- Smiling

By doing these things they will be moving more and they will find new things (hands and feet)

Care of Infants

Shaken Baby Syndrome

Risk Factors

- Unrealistic expectations of babies

- Young or single parenthood

- Stress

- Domestic violence

- Alcohol or substance abuse

- Unstable family situations

- Depression

- History of mistreatment as a child

Ways to Prevent this

- Set baby in crib or car seat and go to another room to calm down

- Call a friend or family member

SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)

Maternal Risk Factors

- Younger than 20 years old

- Smokes cigarettes

- Uses drugs or alcohol

- Has inadequate prenatal care

Risk Factors

- Age: Most vulnerable during their second and third month of life

- Family History: babies who've had siblings or cousins die of SIDS are at a higher risk

- Secondhand Smoke: babies who live with smokers have a higher chance of getting SIDS

- Premature: both being born early and having low birth weight increase your babies chances of SIDS


Dos and Don'ts

Do always put your baby to sleep on his back

Do try swaddling your child

Do keep toys out of your child's crib

Don't put blankets in their crib

Don't smoke while you are pregnant, and don't allow anyone to smoke around your infant

Don't put your baby to sleep on its side or tummy

Physical Development of Infants

Motor Skill Development

Head to Foot Development

A child gains control of the head first, then the arms, and then the legs. Infants develop control of the head and face movements within the first 2 months after birth. In the next few months, they are able to lift themselves up by using their arms. By 6 to 12 months of age, infants start to gain leg control and maybe able to crawl, stand, or walk.

Center of the Body Outward

The spinal cord develops before outer parts of the body. The babies arms will be able to function before its hands and its legs will be able to function before its feet.

Physical Development Rate

Each child is different and the roles at which individual children grow is different. Although the sequences of growth and development are usually the same for all children, the rates at which individual children reach developmental stages will be different.

Brain Development

Promoting Brain Development

You need to allow your child to explore and learn new things. If you don't it will affect your child later on in life.

First Year of Life

The first year of an infants life is important for a child's future brain development because they learn so much.

Cognitive Development

Piaget's Belief

Infants use their senses and motor skills to learn about their environments. Their senses help them learn by them feeling and ect. Their motor skills help them learn more by allowing them to move around to new areas.

Simple to Complex

Infants are able to do simple things and then they slowly progress up to more complex tasks

Creating a Good learning Environment

You need to have a really good learning environment for your infant to be able to learn.

Toys and Activities to Use

Use toys that are not all electronic. There are toys that they can play with that allow them to think a lot and are challenging.

Language Development

Infants learn languages faster at younger ages so if you can allow your child to be subject to more than one language.

Promoting Healthy Social & Emotional Development

Trust vs. Mistrust

Trust is extremely important. Without your child knowing they can trust you it will affect them a lot.

Long Term Effects

Trust Trust will affect how your child acts towards you as well as how they act towards other people.

Mistrust If your child doesn't trust anyone they will keep everything to them selves and its not safe for them to do that.