Your Baby's First Year - Weeks 3 and 4


Your Baby's 3rd and 4th Weeks
The Parent's Guide to Baby's First Year

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Baby Weeks 3 and 4

Every week of your baby's life, he will seem a bit more alert and awake. You will see that you are having a bit more fun with him, and will find him doing and learning new things, as little as they may seem. While your baby will still spend much of his time sleeping and eating, you will notice that he is awake a little bit more during this time, and definitely focusing more on his surroundings.

At this point he may startle even while sleeping, and he will jump at loud noises, but not wake up. These noises could range from the phone ringing, to a dog barking, to the vacuum cleaner running. This reflex helps protect newborns and helps them sleep through noise and is the reason why many newborns can sleep in a room that has a loud radio playing or vacuuming.

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Week 3 Milestones

By the end of the month your baby will most definitely be able to lift and hold his head off the floor slightly, for a small period of time during tummy time. By this point some babies can lift their heads to about a 45 degree angle, and there are a few that can even lift their heads to a 90 degree angle. You might notice your baby making noises other than cries, perhaps even like dove coos! If you are lucky, you might see your baby's beautiful smile for the first time during the first month.

Baby's First Doctors Visit

Sometime between 2 weeks and one month old, your pediatrician will have you come in for a well-check with your baby. Most well-checks are relatively the same. There are a number of things that the doctor will be looking at to make sure your baby is progressing normally. Some of the things your doctor will look at include:

  • Your baby's weight, length and head circumference. This is done so that the doctor can create a growth chart from birth, and make sure your baby is growing properly.
  • A physical exam of baby which will include listening to your baby's heart and lungs with a stethoscope, feeling the baby's abdomen to make sure there are no abnormal bumps or growths, and rotating the hips to rule out any dislocation or possible hip displaysia.
  • Your baby's soft spot will be checked to make sure it isn't closing too fast, giving the brain time to grow properly within the skull.
  • If your baby did not receive his first hepatitis B vaccination at birth, he should be receiving it at this appointment as well. These are just a few of the more common items a doctor will check for at this visit. Every pediatrician is different so they might skip something. If there is something you want checked, that your pediatrician doesn't check, just ask them! They will probably check it for you.

What Might Concern You at 3 Weeks

Baby Weeks 3 and 4

Colic! A word known by the world to make any parent shutter in the fear of the possibility, or sigh in the relief that it didn't happen to them. How do you know what is normal in terms of your baby's tears?

Colic is defined as a baby crying non-stop at least three hours a day, three days a week, and for at least three weeks. Some might think this doesn't sound too bad, but in reality most colicky babies cry more than three hours a day, non-stop, and 6-7 days of the week. Colic can show its' ugly head as early as three weeks old (although some babies get colicky later) and can last up until 4 months old.

If your baby has colic, there will be no consoling him. If he won't nap, he is dry, fed, and burped, but still crying all you can really do is try to comfort him. Rock him, hold him, but don't get discouraged if nothing you do makes him stop crying. Remember to take breaks yourself so that you don't break down and start crying too. It is perfectly acceptable to lay your baby down in his crib, bassinet, or other safe place, and let him cry for a while so you can take a shower, talk to a friend on the phone, or eat dinner.

This Time Last Year...

You weren't even pregnant yet. How did you imagine having a 3 week old baby would be then? Visit our Fun Birthday Facts Calculator for more trivia about your baby's birthday like what happened on that day in history, when your baby will be driving, and more!

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Commonly Asked Questions

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Of Special Interest

*Each child is different. Your baby may not progress the same as the information found here. The information here is based on the national average. It is not meant to be a replacement for any advice you may receive from your doctor. If you have any concerns about your baby, we advise you to contact your doctor.
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