Baby Bits: Getting to Know Your Little One

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The best things come in the tiniest packages! Your baby will grow and develop as you guide the way ... both Mom and Dad.

One of the greatest aspects of being a new mom is getting to know your little one. A personality will eventually emerge based on heredity and environment: how you respond to your baby.

You’ve seen babies who are wide awake and looking around contentedly and you’ve seen others cry the moment they’re awakened. Both are normal; it’s just different temperaments.

Temperament is inherited with traits coming from both parents and other relatives, and sometimes you can see it at birth: some cry more than others. Or you may love to hug and be hugged but discover that your newborn squirms and fusses when he’s hugged too much.

Temperament is not ALL in the genes, however. It’s partly shaped by nature and partly shaped by the world around your baby and the people in it. That’s why your baby’s relationship with you is so vital: it’s important to listen to your baby’s cues and respond to them quickly.

You can begin to decipher your baby’s personality with a little sleuth work. Observe her when she’s in different situations alone with you or with others around. How you respond to her is up to you, and, over time, can make a big difference in how she feels and how she expresses those feelings.

Will Baby Be …

1. Calm or active?
2. Happy or sad?
3. Predictable or not?
4. Adaptable or cautious?
5. Intense or easy going?

Source: Your Child’s Health and Development

Daddy Just Might Know Best!

For years and years and years, moms have whispered behind their hubbies’ backs about “his” way of doing things versus hers — and believing all the while that she alone is right. Perhaps it’s high time to ditch the stigma, after all. According to new Pew Research, the number of stay-at-home dads is on the rise: Fathers who don’t work outside the home numbered 2 million in 2012, up practically 1 million since 1989.  If you have a stay-at-home dad in your house and you think he needs some skill building, don’t start bugging him. Just give him a book! In A Dad’s Guide to Baby Care by Colin Cooper (Octopus Books; 2015), he’ll get a complete practical guide written just for him. Step-by-step routines for everything from bathing to dressing to snack making and more will set his mind at ease — without having to ask you. He’ll be an expert in no time, and before you know it, you’ll have given up the lead at home. That’ll be nice, right?

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) a Problem

A new Vanderbilt study published in the Journal of Perinatology shows the number of infants born in the U.S. with drug withdrawal symptoms is going up. It has almost doubled in a four-year period. As reported by Vanderbilt news, NAS is linked to illicit drug use and the use of prescription opioids — narcotic pain relievers such as hydrocodone — by pregnant women. Infants born with NAS are more likely to have respiratory complications, feeding difficulty, seizures and low birth weight.

The findings of the study show that NAS is a growing public health problem in this country, according to William Cooper, M.D., professor of pediatrics and health policy, and the senior author of the study. For more information, go to



Susan Swindell Day is the editor in chief of Nashville Parent and the mom of four amazing kids.

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