10 surprising facts about newborns

Babies have some incredible skills right from the start, even before they are born.

Sure, they are absolutely adorable but that’s not the only thing they have going for them. Read on to see some surprising and weird newborn facts.

1. Learning to talk begins in the womb

Your baby starts hearing your voice and other sounds around 23 weeks of pregnancy while they are warmly tucked inside your womb. That is why you always hear that it’s never too early to start talking and reading to your little one. Your baby will start to recognize your voice in the womb, and research suggests that the sooner you start reading to your baby, the more positive impact it will have on them as they grow.

2. Babies have more bones than adults

Your baby is born with about 300 bones, which is about 100 more bones that a normal adult! As babies grow their bones fuse together. The skull is a great example of this. It starts as three pieces of bone that eventually join together to make one solid bone.

3. Newborns are tear-free

That doesn’t mean they don’t make sounds of discomfort, of course. They howl and scream for what they need, however they don’t cry because they don’t produce real tears until approximately three weeks old. It is common for new moms to make up for the missing tears during those first few days though due to an overload of emotions and hormones.

4. Newborns don’t have kneecaps

Does this one surprise you? Babies kneecaps don’t develop into hard bone until they are about 3-5 years old. If babies had bony kneecaps it could make the birthing process more difficult. By it being only cartilage to start, it allows for more flexibility which is important during birth.

5. Newborns are short-sighted

Your baby’s sight works best from 8 to 12 inches away – the perfect distance for looking up into mom or dad’s eyes. Everything else is a blur of light and different shapes. In fact, their eyesight starts out between 20/200 and 20/400. That is why babies love bright lights or things that move.

6. Babies know how to swim

Newborns naturally hold their breath when they go underwater. They have two reflexes, the swimming reflex and the dive reflex. One tells them to move their arms and legs and the other tells them to hold their breath. Research done has found that none of the babies in the test inhaled water or choked when they went under. In fact, they weren’t worried about the next dive and were eager to dive again!

7. Birthmarks are normal

If your baby is born with a birthmark it is extremely normal. Around 80% of babies are born with some type of marking that occurred from tiny blood vessels under the skin that are dilated during labor.

8. Babies cry with your accent

This one is pretty remarkable. Research from the University of Wurzburg found that babies pick their mother’s native tongue during the last three months of pregnancy. It is even heard in the pattern of their cries. This means, you can tell the difference between American, French, and Spanish babies just by their cries.

9. Their eye color can change

A common myth is that all babies are born with blue eyes, however more newborns start out with brown eyes than blue. Regardless of what eye color they start out with, it’s important to know that their eye color can change for months after their birth.

10. Babies deprive their parents of approximately 44 days of sleep

Sounds like a lot of sleep, but they are definitely worth it!

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