Two months is a fun age; your baby is finally smiling at you interactively. It isn’t that your baby couldn’t smile before, it’s just that your baby’s vision has improved so dramatically in the past few weeks that he or she can see you well enough to consistently smile back at your funny faces. Your baby is cooing and responding to you and together, you’re finding your rhythm.
- Car: Continue to use an infant seat, in the back seat of the vehicle, rear facing (I like the 5 point harness style that allows you to pull the straps tight against the infant’s chest)
- Sleep: A baby’s risk of SIDS peaks at around 4 months of age, (it is hypothesized that this increase corresponds to when a baby is just learning to roll, but is not yet good at moving his/her head to clear his/her airway). This makes the parent’s roll of providing a safe sleeping environment more important.
- The crib is the safest place, slats <2 3/8 in. apart
- On your baby’s back
- No extra soft bedding (quilts, comforters), pillows, toys, positioners, or bumpers (these are also suffocation hazards)
- Water heater less than 120 degree F (prevent scalding)
- Keep home and car smoke free
- Do not leave the baby on a high surface where he or she could roll off (e.g., changing table, couch, or bed).
- Limit sun exposure
- Childproof your home. A child who can roll can also move across a room and reach a surprising number of things
- Safety gates over stairs
- Locks on cabinets
- Outlet plug covers
- Hooks for blind cords
- Milk. Your baby’s nutritional needs are met at this age by milk, either breast milk or iron-fortified infant formula. Do not introduce cow’s milk until 12 months.
- If breastfeeding, your baby should be feeding approximately 6-10 feedings in a 24-hour period. Most babies will decrease to 5 or 6 feeds by the end of the third month (as they spread out the feedings and increase the volume). Continue to watch output and take your child in for regular weight checks/check-ups as these are the most reliable methods of ensuring your breastfed baby is getting enough to eat.
- If formula feeding, your baby should be taking about 24 ounces in a 24 hour period. Make sure the formula is iron fortified. As for which formula, nearly all infants can tolerate a regular formula without problem. Few medical indications call for hydrolyzed formulas. The latest and greatest in formulas is trying to imitate breast milk and this contains the ingredient DHEA (claiming it is better for your baby’s brain).
- Supplements: If breastfeeding (exclusively) – Vitamin D 400 IU per day (listed on the back of the vitamin bottle) to prevent Ricketts. (Vitamins come in International Units [IU], versus milligrams [mg] or milliliters [mL] used in medications.)
- Coos and makes sounds in response to parent
- Attentive to voices, sounds, visual stimuli
- Lifts head 45 degrees
- Can support chest on forearms
- Do not put your baby to bed with a bottle. It establishes bad habits, causes “bottle rot” (have you seen the children with rotten teeth or capped teeth?), and is a choking hazard.