The world would be a better place if it was dominated by babies. These creatures are angels in human forms and are always a delight to look upon. Although the process of nurturing a baby from conception to delivery and then the weening stage can be very tedious, however, the reward is worth it at the end when every baby grows into a responsible citizen of earth. Babies have been in existence even longer than men, because every man evolved from a baby, and over the years, different studies have come up with several theories, research results and facts about babies. Here are some of them you would love to know.
1. Many studies suggest that premature babies are more likely to be left-handed.
2. A newborn baby has about one cup of blood in his body.
3. Babies have three times as many taste buds as adults.
4. From birth to toilet training, a baby goes through an average of 8000 diaper changes.
5. Babies are born without any form of bacteria in their bodies.
6. Each year in the U.S, more than 100,000 babies are born addicted to cocaine, due to their mothers’ use of the drug during pregnancy.
7. Neuro-scientists believe babies don’t dream for the first few years of their life.
8. James Harrison has donated blood over 1,000 times saving over 2 million unborn babies from Rhesus disease.
9. A baby cannot taste salt until it is 4 months old. The delay may be related to the development of kidneys, which start to process sodium at about that age.
10. Utah has the highest birthrate in the U.S., at about 21 babies per 1,000 people. Vermont has the lowest birth rate, with slightly more than 10 babies born per 1,000 people.
11. In medieval Europe, leeches were commonly used to treat babies’ illnesses.
12. The protein that keeps a baby’s skull from fusing is called ‘noggin.’
13. A baby’s eyes are 75% of their adult size, but its vision is around 20/400. By six months, a baby’s vision should reach 20/20.
14. Newborns are more likely to turn their heads to the right than to the left
15. Newborns are more likely to turn their head to the right than to the left.
16. The inner ear is the only sense organ to develop fully before birth. It reaches its adult size by the middle of pregnancy.
17. Within a few days of birth, a baby can distinguish between the touch of bristles that are of different diameters.
18. Baby has around 10,000 taste buds, far more than adults. They are not just on the tongue but also on the sides, back, and roof of the mouth. Eventually these extra taste buds disappear as they grow older.
19. Babies are born with 300. The bones fuse as they grow, resulting in 206 bones as adults.
20. Every 30 seconds, a baby is born with a birth defect in China.
21. The intestines of a newborn are about 11 feet long. The length will double by the time the baby grows to adulthood.
22. Human babies are the only primates who smile at their parents.
23. A baby is born on its predicted due date just 4% of the time.
24. If a person who was born 8 lbs. and 20 in. at birth continued growing at the same rate as he does the first year, by the time he reached 20, he’d be 25 ft. tall and weigh nearly 315 lbs.
25. A baby is born in the world every three seconds.
26. Over half a million babies (1 in 8) are born prematurely in the United States each year. Low birth weight rate has increased 9% since 2000 and 24% since the mid 1980s.
27. Famous premature babies include Albert Einstein, Charles Darwin, Isaac Newton, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Napoleon Bonaparte, Mark Twain, Pablo Picasso, Auguste Renoir, Stevie Wonder, Johann Goethe, and Sir Winston Churchill.
28. In 1978, the first baby was born in Antarctica: Emilio Marcos Palma.
29. Each year, over four million babies are born in the U.S.
30. Approximately 80% of infants are born with some form of birthmark, usually “stork bites” and “port wine stains.”
31. Approximately two or three of every 1,000 children in the United States are born deaf or hard-of-hearing. More lose their hearing later in childhood.
32. Babies can suffer serious health effects including death if their mothers have an STD.
33. 1 in 5,000 babies is born without an anus opening.
34. Some scientists suggest that shaking the head to mean “no” derives from newborns turning their head away from food when they are full.
35. A baby can recognize the smell and voice of its mother at birth. Although it takes a few weeks before a baby can see the difference between its mother and other adults.
36. A baby’s first social smile appears between four and six weeks after birth.
37. The heaviest baby on record to survive was a 22 lb. 8 oz. Italian baby born in 1955.
38. In the United States, more babies are born on Wednesday than on other days of the week. Sunday is the slowest day.
39. In the United States, more babies are born in late summer and early fall than in other times of the year. February tends to be the month when the least babies are born.
40. A newborn urinates about every 20 minutes and then roughly every hour at 6 months.
41. In 1970, the average age for a first-time mom in the U.S. was 21. In 2008, it was 25.1.
42. At birth, babies have no kneecaps. Kneecaps do not develop completely until after six months.
43. Germany, Denmark, Iceland and other countries have official rules about what a baby can be named.
44. It is estimated that new parents in the U.S. will spend on average $7,000 the first year on a new baby’s diapers, formula, and day care. This does not include medical costs.
45. Babies born in May usually weigh on average 200 grams more than babies born in other months.
46. In 2010, there were 9.8 million single moms living with children under 18 in the U.S., up from 3.4 million in 1970.
47. There were about 1,049 male babies born for every 1,000 female babies in 2006 in the United States. This ratio has been consistent for the past 60 years.
48. In 2006, there were 32.1 pairs of twins born for every 1,000 births in the United States. This rate has remained roughly the same, though between 1980 and 2004, the rate rose 70%.
49. The largest number of babies born to a woman is 69. From 1725-1765, a Russian peasant woman gave birth to 16 sets of twins, seven sets of triplets, and four sets of quadruplets.
50. Research has shown that cesarean babies are more likely to have breathing difficulties, since they did not encounter an important hormonal and physiological changes that occur during labor.
51. A woman from Michigan gave birth to her three babies on 8/8/8, 9/9/9 and 10/10/10 respectively.
52. During the nine months between conception and birth, a baby’s weight increases by 3,000 million times. Between birth and the end of its second year, an infant will have quadrupled in size.
53. In four or five out of every 100 normal newborn babies, there is discharge of milk from the nipples. This is due to unusually high levels of the mother’s hormones that leak across the placenta during pregnancy.
54. A baby’s head is proportionally huge, being one-quarter of the total body length, compared to only one-eighth of the total adult’s length.
55. The grasp of a newborn baby is so strong that its whole body can hang in midair, with its bent fingers supporting its weight.
56. At the moment of birth, a baby’s heart beats at 180 pulses per minute. Within a few hours, the rate falls to 140 pulses. At 1 year old, the infant heart rate is 115 beats per minute, and as an adult, 70-80 beats a minute.
57. Research shows that a baby responds positively to the fragrance of its mother’s breasts and ignores breast pads used by other women. On the other hand a blindfolded woman has the ability to identify her own child from a host of other babies by scent alone.
58. New babies prefer looking at a drawing of a face rather than a random pattern, and they prefer smiling faces to grumpy ones.
59. Up until 7 months old, a baby can breathe and swallow at the same time.
60. The youngest person ever to give birth is a five-year old Peruvian girl.
61. Lina Medina, a 5-year-old Peruvian girl, was the youngest person to ever give birth. She gave birth to a boy on May 14, 1939.
62. An average baby will go through approximately 2,700 diapers a year
63. On average, female babies spend a day longer in the womb than male babies. White babies, on average, spend five days longer inside their mothers than black babies, while Indian babies spend six days longer in the womb than white babies.
64. As late as 1985, doctors believed babies didn’t feel pain and conducted surgeries with no anesthesia.
65. A baby will eat an estimated 15 pounds of cereal per year.
66. A baby was born in 2005 with a conjoined head that had no body. The head could blink and smile.
67. Newborn babies can only see in black and white for a few months.
68. In 2014, Noah and Emma were the most popular names in the U.S. for boys and girls respectively.
69. Over 90% of women who learn that they are carrying a baby with Down Syndrome, will choose abortion over keeping their baby.
70. Baby foreskins are commonly used in cosmetic treatments.
71. During pregnancy, if the mother suffers organ damage, the baby in the womb sends stem cells to repair the damaged organ.
72. The UK is the first country in the world to allow the creation of babies from the DNA of three people.
73. Babies are born with self-awareness which allows them to differentiate their bodies from other people’s.
74. Baby cages hanging out the window were used in America in the 1920s.
75. Newborns prefer the cadence of their native language at birth, suggesting that some language learning starts in utero. Research suggests that babies may even cry with the intonations of their mother tongue.
76. A 20-month-old baby became the youngest professional soccer player ever, after being signed up by a Belgian club.
77. A study says that breastfeeding a baby may reduce by 22% a woman’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
78. Brazil distributes women’s breast milk around the country to babies whose mothers can’t provide it for them.
79. Children don’t remember much before the age of 3, due to what psychologists call “infantile amnesia.” Neuroscientists believe that early experiences never make it into long-term memory banks because the brain’s recording machinery isn’t functional yet or because memory is tied to language acquisition.
80. Babies are born with natural swimming abilities and can hold their breath. However, this ability quickly disappears.
81. 60% of South Korean families use professionals to find a name for their babies.
82. In Japan, there’s a ‘Crying Sumo’ contest, where wrestlers compete to see who can make a baby cry first.
83. Parents of new babies miss out on 6 months worth of sleep in the first 2 years of their child’s life.
84. According to a study, women who snore during pregnancy are more likely to have smaller babies.
85. After an 8.0 magnitude earthquake hit Mexico City in 1985, nearly all newborn babies survived a collapsed hospital for 7 days without nourishment, water, warmth or human contact.
86. The chances of giving birth to twins are especially high in certain parts of West Africa. In Nigeria, for example, the odds are 22-1. Conversely, women in Japan are less likely to have twins, with the odds as high as 200-1.
87. The average weight of a baby at birth is 7-8 lbs. The smallest baby ever to survive weighed only 8.5 oz. at birth.
88. On the whole, boy babies are slightly heavier than girl babies. The average weight of a newborn boy is 7 lbs. 10 oz. while that of a newborn girl is 7 lbs. 2 oz.
89. The brain of a newborn accounts for 10% of its total body weight. By the end of the first year, an infant’s brain increases in size two and half times, and by the end of the fifth year, it is three times what it was at birth. At all stages, the male brain is slightly larger than that of the female, but does not necessarily suggest more use or capacity.
90. The birth rate for twins has increased 76% since 1980.
91. Salt receptors on the tongue develop roughly four months after birth.
92. At around 6 months old, a baby learns that each object is unique. Before this time, whenever it sees a bird in a tree, it always assumes it was the same bird.
93. Brain scans reveal that male babies have more asymmetrical brain hemispheres than female babies, and that female brains tend to have greater symmetry in the part of the brain concerned with complex mental processes.
94. The term “infant” is from the Latin infans, meaning “unable to speak” and typically refers to the ages from 1-12 months. A “newborn” usually refers to an infant in the first 28 days of life.
95. SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) is responsible for more deaths than any other cause for babies 1 month to 1 year old, claiming 7,000 babies each year in the United States, or almost one baby every hour.
96. Eyesight is the least developed of all the newborn senses. Newborns can see best at a distance of only 8-14 inches, and until they are about three months old, they see best in their peripheral vision. Babies may also have difficulty distinguishing color tones.
97. Research indicates that a baby’s name influences a baby’s life into adulthood. For example, a newborn boy with a more “feminine” name could lead to behavioral problems in life.
98. Most newborns will lose all the hair they are born with in the first three or four months of life.
99. Babies are not born with psychic tearing, or tears that indicates emotional distress, though they are born with just enough tears to keep the eyes moist and healthy. They start producing tears in abundance between 2 and 4 months of age.
100. Ancient Greeks were known to spit on themselves to ward off the Evil Eye, and the ritual extended to babies as well. Medieval nurses licked the faces of their charges, while peasants all over the world would spit in the faces of babies.
101. Babies all over the world have been adorned with necklaces, anklets, and amulets to ward off the Evil Eye. Some ornamental infant wear included odd numbers, crescent shapes, five-point stars, amber, red beads, tiger images, and coral.
102. In European and American societies, coral was often used as a teething aid or in rattles for babies, but its real function was to act as a protective element in the battle against evil. It was used specifically for first-born sons.
103. Historians of the 18th century estimate that an infant was four times more likely to be a victim of homicide than anyone else.
104. The word “baby” may come from a baby’s babbling, as in “ba-ba-ba-ba.”
105. In Europe, milk was not pasteurized until the 1890s and was avoided, particularly for infants, because people believed their child would grow up to resemble the animal.
106. The Greeks thought that mother’s milk was produced in the uterus and transported to the breast by special vessels in the body. The first fluid secreted after birth was considered dangerous, and an older child would draw the breast milk first, before it is fed to a new born baby.
107. In Medieval Europe, unruly babies were thought to be the result of inferior breast milk.
108. In Ancient Rome, an olive branch would be hung from the front door of a house if a boy was born, and a strip of woolen fabric was hung if the child was a girl. Eighteenth-century London houses hung strips of ribbon on their doorknockers: pink for a girl and blue for a boy.
109. Until the 7th century, doctors believed many infant sicknesses were caused by the presence of too much acid in the stomach. Babies were fed chalk, crushed eggshells, coral, and oyster shells mixed with their gruel to counteract the acidity.
110. Until the 19th century, babies were not considered to have personalities and, therefore, were not in need of the physical and psychological nurturing advised today.
111. before the 19th century, Redheaded nurses were avoided because it was thought that babies absorbed the characteristics of the person nursing them.
112. In 1235, Henry III decreed that Christian wet nurses could not nurse Jewish babies.
113. The very best chance a baby has of surviving gestation is when its mother is aged 22, an age which has been described as “the age of fecundity” in humans.
114. Depending on family economics, in the 18th century, babies were fed a kind of gruel made of flour and water. Known as “pap,” “panda,” or “caudle,” it was a breeding ground for bacteria and most closely resembled wallpaper paste.
115. Spoons were often used to feed infants and were known as “pap boats.” Expensive and elaborate versions were available to those who could afford it. The expression “born with a silver spoon in one’s mouth” probably evolved around the 16th century.
116. In Europe and America in the 18th century, it was tradition to wash a newborn and then scour it with salt. It would be purged of meconium with emetic syrup, oil of almonds, castor oil, or anything else the midwife had, including wine and whisky.
117. In parts of England, a newborn’s head was washed in rum for luck. It was common all over Europe to give the infant a dab of butter and a little sugar to signify the hoped for riches that the child would have in the future.
118. Traditionally the caul, which sometimes covered the head of an infant, was highly treasured and credited with magical powers.
119. Traditionally, the length of the cut umbilical cord was thought to predict the length of a male baby’s penis.
120. Between 1838 and 1960, more than half the photos taken were of babies.
121. The Apache Indians ritually killed one twin, arguing that the mother did not have sufficient milk to feed two infants, and some Eskimo tribes left one twin outside to die in the cold.
122. After birth, the human brain more than doubles to reach 60% of its adult size by the time a baby is 1 year old.
123. Babies typically prefer a female voice over a male voice, which may explain why people raise the pitch of their voice when talking to babies.
124. Meconium, or the greenish-black sticky material in the baby’s digestive track, stands in for fecal material and allows the intestine to develop so it can digest milk immediately after birth.
125. The philosopher John Lock argued in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding that a baby is born with a “blank slate” or a tabula rasa. This is in contrast to the beliefs of Plato and the medieval church, both of whom believed babies were born with innate inequalities.
126. Psychologists believe that a baby’s self-awareness develops around 12 months old.
127. Object permanence is usually understood at 8-9 months of age.
128. In the late 19th century, it was medically accepted in Europe and America that “infants who persisted in the habit of sucking always become masturbators.”
129. Babies in medieval Europe were often tightly swaddled in linen strips because it was thought that swaddling would help its arms and legs grow straight. It also served to immobilize the baby.
130. The infant mortality in medieval Europe was as high as 30-50%.
131. Children who often smile in their sleep, are said to be having a blank dream with the face of their mother stamped on every scene.
132. Female infanticide is still a major problem in India and China. Estimates indicate that 30.5 million females are “missing” from China.
133. To many Victorians, the sight of crawling infants reminded them of their ape-like origins, and they forced their children to learn to walk early with the aid of cages and walkers.
134. Research suggests that infants have a complex understanding of social interactions and hierarchies by 8-10 months of age.
135. All babies are made in heaven and sent to parents on earth to take charge of them for a time being.