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By the end of 33 weeks, you’ll see your child progressing well in terms of development, both physically and mentally. This time might be characterised by random mood swings – your child will be giggling and cooing for anyone one moment, and suddenly crying inconsolably the next.
Even in terms of food, your child will be inconsistent, to say the least. One day, he will be receptive to healthy, solid, family food, and the next day, he might show interest in nothing except milk. It can be a confusing time for parents, considering the breakneck speed at which their child seems to be developing!
A 33 Week Old Baby’s Development
In a 33 week old baby, growth spurts are common. Within the span of a few months, your child will start crawling, and then progress to standing up, and even walking. The weight of the baby also increases quickly, and his muscles strengthen, too. Your baby will most definitely be grabbing on to stuff and trying his new muscles by throwing them away.
Sometimes, the rapid development of the child can be a bit overwhelming for the baby himself. The child may want to be left alone on some days, but may cling to you all day at other times. However confusing it gets, it will all be for the best – by the end of this period, your baby will be completely transformed, with new skills and capabilities on every front.
Children at this age will most likely be crawling around a lot, and in a quick manner. In ideal circumstances, your child will already be pulling himself up to a standing position using furniture, and may even be walking a bit using his arms for support. However, you need to keep an eye on your child all the time when this happens, as your child is sure to fall at some point. There will be plenty of falling, so ensure that there are no sharp edges or surfaces around him which can hurt.
In terms of communication, the child will already have been babbling for some time now. During this time, however, he might utter his first words – ‘mama’ can really mean mama at this time! He might already have associated certain sounds to certain objects by this age, so brace yourself for the first words of your baby.
The grabbing and holding skills of the child also develop well, to the point that he will be able to hold his own bottle during feeding. Even if he does not hold his bottle a lot, do not worry – the most likely explanation is that your baby is simply not willing to hold the bottle himself.
Changing diapers at this time also becomes harder than ever. Previously, your child would have been offering little resistance while you changed him, but now, the same activity has the potential to turn into something longer and messy! Therefore, always have something on hand that can keep your child engaged during the time you change his diaper.
[Also Read: 8 Months Old Baby Development]
A 33 Week Old Baby’s Milestones
Some of these milestones will already have occurred in your child, but in some cases, they might not have. This does not indicate the capabilities of your child in any way. Milestones are simply guidelines that give parents an idea of how their child will be developing, and is not a system of rigid rules.
- The fingers of your baby will have strengthened to the point that he will be able to point at items he wants, and grab light objects like toys and bottles.
- Your baby will have been blabbering for a few months now, but that would have hardly made any sense until now. However, his first words will be uttered quite soon, with the forerunners usually being ‘no’, ‘mama’, or ‘dada’.
- Teething will also occur, with your child having more than a few teeth by now. This means that he will put anything he gets his hands on directly into his mouth, so always keep an eye on him.
[Also Read: 8 Months Old Baby Milestones]
By this time, your child will already have transitioned into solid food to a great degree. Even though he might still prefer breast milk during some days, family food will be his preference on most days. You can feed him pureed or mashed items through spoon-feeding of small quantities.
Even though molars will not have grown, chewing is still possible with the strong gums the child has. He will be able to chew most food items, barring the tough ones. Always keep a few food items with you for your baby whenever you go out, in case you eat something that is not suitable for your child (like fast food). This is a great hack for mothers who travel a lot with their child.
If your child has not been showing much inclination to solid foods, it is best not to force something onto him. This might result in bad associations with food, and eating problems in the future. You have to remember that even though your child is supposed to have solid food by the end of nine months, breast milk still remains his main source of nutrition.
[Also Read: 8 Months Old Baby Food]
For a 33 week old baby, sleep becomes disruptive due to development of the muscles occurring at night. In this period, his habit of taking daytime naps decreases to just two, which can result in disruptions of both your sleep patterns. During the initial days of this transition period, your child might be crankier and more tired than usual.
He might wake you up frequently at night with cries for attention, so co-sleeping is still the best option for both of you. Ensure that there is a safe sleeping place for your baby, and let him cry for a few minutes before checking up on him -most of the time, your baby will simply go back to sleep after a few minutes. In order to increase the quality of his sleep at night, you can reduce the amount of time he sleeps during the day.
[Also Read: 8 Months Old Baby Sleeping Basics]
A 33 Week Old Baby’s Care Tips
- Co-sleeping is the best option, so that you get to sleep some more at night.
- If your child starts crying in the middle of the night, attend to him only if he continues for a few minutes. In most cases, your child will quickly pass onto a deep slumber.
- Teething toys help the child relieve the discomfort associated with the eruption of teeth, so let him bite into cold and chilled items a few times during the day.
Tests and Vaccinations
Your child will have been given a number of vaccines during his 6-month checkup, and the next set of vaccinations will be scheduled only after he becomes a year old. However, do check up with your paediatrician to know more about the vaccination schedule – a meningitis vaccine or a flu shot might be prescribed, if the doctor thinks that your baby is at risk of contracting the disease.
Games and Activities
Controlled movements are all the rage at this period, so encourage your child to wave and clap as much as possible. This helps develop the motor skills and strengthen the muscles of the child. You can play simple games of pointing and waving with your baby as a fun, bonding exercise.
This is also the period when your child becomes a keen listener: noises and sounds delight him more than you think! You can play simple noise association games with him, by banging utensils or dropping squeaky toys onto the floor. Let him explore various sounds around him. Also, you should talk to him as much as possible. His first words will most likely be a word that is uttered a lot, and in most cases, it will be ‘no’. ‘Mama’ and ‘dada’ are possible alternatives, too.
Encourage him to develop his fine motor skills as much as possible, even though they do not appear to be controlled movements at first. Waving and clapping, as mentioned above, are the best choices for these.
[Also Read: 8 Months Old Baby Games and Activities]
When to Consult a Doctor
In case you have missed any vaccinations, you should definitely pay the doctor a visit. The risks of not being vaccinated far outweigh the comparatively small bouts of fever or rashes that your child may get after a vaccine is administered. If you feel that there is something wrong in the way your child is behaving, it is recommended that you check with your paediatrician about it. As mothers, trust your instincts rather than logic to know what is best for your child.
It is during this age that your baby starts to form a personality and become very playful. Your child will be a joy to watch, even though your sleep may be compromised. Be on the lookout for his first words, and carry a camera around, so that you don’t miss any of his antics or fun actions!
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