Opinions on babies seem to be split 50/50: some people go crazy over them, while others can’t stand to be around them for too long. We see them as tiny, helpless humans and they are, but their bodies are completely different from ours and it remains that way up until the first few months of their lives. But what are babies actually like when we bring in the science? Here are some awesome scientific facts about babies, even if you’re a fan or not.
Studies have shown that babies have highly sensitive taste buds and while still in the womb, they get a sample of different foods through the absorption of the amniotic fluid. This sensitivity doesn’t last long and steadily decreases over time, resulting in a different reaction to flavors they once loved. Babies are also unable to detect salt until five months old, due to the fact that salt is not part of their dietary requirement at that age. So, it’s best to limit the salt in their diet until they’re ready for it.
2. Newborns Know Your Taste in Music
Not only do babies pick up on what their mothers eat during pregnancy but they also become fond of the type of music she listens to as well. According to scientists, babies develop a preference for the type of music they heard as a fetus, something they stick with until a year old. They can also recognize certain styles of music as well as specific songs. As for the ones they don’t like? Well, newborns will start kicking as a reaction to the music they can’t stand!
3. Babies Can’t Smile Until They’re A Few Months Old
If your bundle of joy is beaming at you at only a few weeks old, then sorry to break it to you but that’s not a real smile. It’s actually a reflex they do when they’re tired or even asleep. It’s similar to those arm swings and leg kicks they do when they’re fussing around. Their real smile usually occurs between the ages of one and a half to three months old. You’ll know it’s the real thing when it’s a clear response to something and when it lasts much longer than a few seconds.
4. Newborn Babies Don’t Produce Tears
They kick, scream and wail all night long yet, no tears. Why is that? This is because for the first two weeks of their life, babies’ tear ducts are still developing but don’t become fully functional between two weeks and two months of age. It’s not that their eyes don’t produce water at all but there just isn’t enough for them to actually shed tears. In some cases, a delay in tear duct development is a sign of a bigger problem and this can lead to blocked tear ducts which in turn can lead to infections. Crazy how they can cry so much yet don’t shed a single tear!
5. They Can Swallow and Breathe Simultaneously
Babies have some really cool tricks under their tiny sleeves. For example, they can breathe and swallow at the same time! Though, it doesn’t really occur at once right down to the exact millisecond. It’s more precise to say that babies engage in a somewhat complicated action known as the suck-swallow-breathe process where they instinctively time the movement of their jaw, hyoid bone, palate, tongue, larynx and pharynx to extract milk then swallow it, all while breathing. However, they lose this skill over time hence why we sometimes choke on water while drinking.
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