Why and When Babies Actually Smile?

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Why and When Babies Actually Smile?

April 23, 2015

Written by: Lisa Coffey

“You’re never fully dressed without a ….. Smile!”

 Oh! What an overjoyed feeling you experience when your own little flesh-and-blood adoringly gazes right into your eyes and then flashes a short, but definite smile!

Baby Smiles

Now does she really wants to converse her joy or does she simply has gas?

Babies generally don’t initiate social smiling till they attain about 8 months, however, their smiles could still tell you a lot beforehand. In reality, babies do smile even during their sleep right from the day of birth. Believe it or not!

According to many baby experts, babies do smile long before they’re born, even in the uterus. However, these initial smiles are not in response to anything or intentional. These actually are the reflex smiles just like the jerky leg and arm movements which the baby experiences as her body goes through the phase of equipment- testing, though during the next 12 months your baby will definitely begin to smile as a way to express her pleasure, communicate with you and eventually, develop a sense-of-humor.

The article talks about the various stages of your baby’s smile:

During 0-1 months:

Neonatal smiles occur right from the birth to the completion of one month and would display no emotional substance. These are quite spontaneous and would often happen while your baby feels drowsy or all through the REM sleep stages.

Baby smiles are sub-cortical in nature and would really decrease along with maturity (that’s why ‘pre-mature babies’ often smile more than ‘full-term babies’). Therefore, in contrast to the popular belief, your baby smile has actually got nothing to do with – any form of gas!

During 1-2 months:

During this period babies gradually begin to respond to surrounding stimulation. Your baby’s 1st fully awake smile most likely would emerge between 6th and 10th weeks. Your baby’s brain is evolving during this age and along with her improving vision, she would familiarize with your face.

She’ll first respond to the aural stimuli only – like music or mommy or daddy’s voice. Next phase is the response to both visual as well as aural (combined) stimulation. Your baby would respond to the visual stimulation alone lastly.

As she grows, she’ll smile at the things she discovers as pleasurable like voices, cuddles as well as faces. However, her smile is a response to sensory feelings and is not at all a social response. But you can still try to cheer a smile. Carefully notice which expressions and noises make her respond. Offer her plenty of time to study your face while talking to her gently. Emulate her expressions and she might start emulating yours!

Social Smile during 2-3 Months:

Now during this stage, your baby wishes to connect to you. She’ll smile whenever she sees you and even will respond to various silly sounds made by you! She’ll even learn that she can acquire your response just by smiling (apart from crying). Babies are smart indeed!

The grunting, gurgling, the eccentric humming – these are your baby’s attempts to express herself. Without an inch of a doubt – you’re her favorite now!

She’ll laugh and squeal when she plays with you. She’ll even respond by getting her entire body in the act, for instance, moving her legs and arms.

During 2-6 months:

Visit a doctor, in case your baby isn’t smiling in 3 months. Never push your baby to smile, if once she does, just enjoy it. By 2nd to 3rd months, your baby probably would start to gaze right into your eyes and flash a gorgeous smile. They’ll even more respond to the facial interactions.

By 4th to 6th months, the baby will begin to smile first and then turn away. They’re learning to adjust emotions as the joy might be a bit too intense. Just allow her to look away and then re-engage her after she flashes her smile back to you.

Some babies are a bit more smiley comparatively and 6 month old babies would probably beam at you no matter what you do.

During 6-12 months:

During these periods you’ll witness variety of diverse smiles. For instance, open mouth smiles reveal more delight than the closed ones. She’ll even begin to play with amusement. By the 8th or 9th months, baby smiles are often used in social ways and as a communication mode, so do ensure to respond to your baby when she beams at you with a big grin.

Now this is the particular phase when your baby begins to recognize you as the most unique and exceptional from the rest of the people. And as a result your smiling baby will most likely stop smiling when they are face to face with strangers. This ability to distinguish faces in fact is a healthy sign of development.

Now when, at this stage your baby is ready to acquire and develop speaking skills, her sense-of-humor also surfaces. When she senses something as funny, she would push to get a response out of you too, therefore, do giggle along with her. Fun activities such as making a funny face or dropping something on the floor will provide amusement to her. Surprise element is a big thing to make babies laugh when they’re about a year old.

Gain benefit of this fun phase, as it’s not every day you would find someone who believes that you’re the most amusing person on the planet!

Author Bio – As a clinician with years of medical experience, Lisa brings a leading approach to maternity wear design fusing her knowledge as a Women’s Health specialist, awareness of current design trends and her unique style, . With the introduction of mommyliciousmaternity, the needs of the prenatal body are embraced throughout the entire pregnancy. Mommylicious maternity apparel inspires women to enjoy a healthy and active pregnancy.

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