Baby Smiling In Her Sleep Made Us Melt

0kirstylouise0Published: January 12, 20181,906 views
Published: January 12, 2018

Everything a baby does is adorable beyond words for its parents. When their child arrives, they look forward to every minutes with it. First smile, first steps, first word, it is a multitude of firsts and they want to immortalize it all on film.

But to see your baby having its first dream is something magical. As mom Kirsty Louise got to learn, babies do dream and apparently this one had a pleasant one. Just look at how the baby girl giggles in her slumber, with her eyes half open.

Have you ever wondered what it means when your baby smiles at you? It would seem that babies are able to smile from day one, but they don’t mean anything much until around the age of eight months. “In fact, babies smile when they’re asleep from birth,” says Dr. Daniel Messinger.

Neonatal smiling, as it is called, occurs from birth to one month of age and shows no emotional content. Smiles are spontaneous and often occur while the baby is drowsy or during REM stages of sleep. Baby smiles are subcortical in origin and will actually decrease with maturity (so premature babies smile more than full-term babies).

At around one or two months, babies will gradually start to respond to environmental stimulation. The baby’s first smile when it’s fully awake will likely appear between six and 10 weeks. By four to six months, babies will start to smile, then look away. “Babies are learning to regulate emotions and the joy may be too intense,” says Dr. Messinger. Let it look away, then reengage once it returns her smile to you.

Between the 6 months to a year of age, parents will start to see lots of different smiles. As a general rule, open mouth smiles demonstrate more joy than closed. Babies will also start to play with laughter. By eight or nine months, smiles are used often in social situations and as a method of communication so make sure to respond to your baby when she gives you a big smile.

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