Child's Routine Checkup, 4 Months: Care Instructions

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Your Care Instructions

You may be seeing new sides to your baby's behaviour at 4 months. He or she may have a range of emotions, including anger, joy, fear, and surprise. Your baby may be much more social and may laugh and smile at other people.

At this age, your baby may be ready to roll over and hold on to toys. He or she may coo, smile, laugh, and squeal. By the third or fourth month, many babies can sleep up to 7 or 8 hours during the night and develop set nap times.

Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.

How can you care for your child at home?

Feeding

  • Breast milk is the best food for your baby. Let your baby decide when and how long to nurse.
  • If you do not breastfeed, use a formula with iron.
  • Give your baby only breast milk or iron-fortified formula for the first 6 months of life.
  • Do not give your baby honey in the first year of life. Honey can make your baby sick.

Parenting

  • Read books to your baby daily.
  • If your baby is teething, it may help to gently rub his or her gums or use teething rings.
  • Put your baby on his or her stomach when awake to help strengthen the neck and arms.
  • Give your baby brightly coloured toys to hold and look at.

Immunizations

  • Most babies get the second dose of important vaccines at their 4-month checkup. Make sure that your baby gets the recommended childhood vaccines for illnesses, such as whooping cough and diphtheria. These vaccines will help keep your baby healthy and prevent the spread of disease. Your baby needs all doses to be protected.

When should you call for help?

Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:

  • You are concerned that your child is not growing or developing normally.
  • You are worried about your child's behaviour.
  • You need more information about how to care for your child, or you have questions or concerns.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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