Seeing your face
While your baby's five senses will mature at different rates, it's usually her eyesight that gets most parents excited at this early stage. What can she see, how far can she see?
At birth your baby's vision is fairly blurry but she can focus on objects that are 20-30 cm from her face (no coincidence that this is approximately the distance between your face and hers when you're breastfeeding). At this age, while her eyesight is still developing, she will see bold, high-contrasting colours the best and this makes black and white the greatest colour combo for her to focus on.
While demand feeding is all the go these days - no more rigid schedule, no more screaming baby - it does tend to take its toll on mum. Yes, it's the best way to build your breastmilk supply and it also makes no sense put your baby through thirty minutes of distress just because the clock says it's not yet time to feed him. But… demand feeding can be exhausting, particularly in the early days.
If you've been blessed with a snack feeder, demand feeding can be downright impractical because between the long feeds, the light napping on your chest and the nappy changing, there's simply no time for you to sleep properly or feed and clothe yourself. So try to strike a balance between demand and scheduled feeding. Often, you can distract your baby for a short time to give your breasts a break. And do try to finish feeds in a fairly timely manner - letting them drag on and on will only make him sleepy.
Obviously the best way to learn good attachment techniques is to have someone physically help you get your baby into the correct position and then onto your breast, or to watch a seasoned friend as she puts her child to the breast, but if you feel you're struggling and you can't get any hands-on help, the two best bits of simple advice are:
- Chest to chest, and chin to breast - her chest should be facing your chest, and her chin should be touching your breast.
- While she is feeding, her lips should look like the 'Special K' logo - her lips should be curled outwards rather than looking like she's giving your nipple a kiss.
Find more about your baby’s week by week development
This article was written by Linda Drummond for Kidspot.com.au and has been adapted for Kidspot.co.nz