Decoding baby’s secret language

Learn ways to decipher the signals from your little one.


So, here it is: Motherhood. You have a beautiful baby whose needs you want to meet more than your own and who is without doubt one of the most important people in your life. There’s only one sticking point. She can’t always tell you what she wants and you may sometimes feel like you’re having a slightly one-sided conversation.

Well fret not, follow these tips to decode her secret language and understand what your baby is trying to tell you. Once you you know these signs, you can be sure you will enhance your bonding-together experience even more with your little one.

Bonding eyes

Your newborn will lock her eyes onto yours around the 1- or 2-month mark, as her focus becomes clearer. This is her way of saying ‘I love you’ as well as looking to you for reassurance when she’s frightened.

How to reply Make eye contact back, talk, sing and engage her. Your baby gets your message even if she doesn’t understand the words. And if she’s looking to you for reassurance after a noise or sudden movement, a good soothing trick is to place your hand quite firmly on her tummy to make her feel secure.

Excited gurgle

This is your baby’s way of saying, “Look at me!” or “I like this!” Depending on what’s happening around her at the time — be it a toy that she’s playing with or something that’s caught her attention — gurgling is her positive, happy way of talking to you.

How to reply Encourage her by mirroring her upbeat tone and facial expressions. Say something like, ‘Hello!’, ‘Do you like that?’ or ‘Do you want this?’ while offering her the toy or object she seems to be looking at. Asking questions will teach your baby the give-and-take of adult conversation.

Hungry tongue

Is your baby sticking out her tongue and moving it from side to side? This indicates her need to search for something such as a cuddle or object to play with. And if her tongue’s sitting on the middle of her bottom lip and poking in and out, she’s showing you she’s hungry. She’ll also turn towards you if you stroke her cheek because she thinks there’s food nearby.

How to reply Offer her different things to find out what she’s searching for or feed her if she’s hungry. Buy a bit more time by distracting her with a toy if you’re unable to feed her immediately.

Main photo: INGimage

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