Babies are the only beings that can garner ooohs and aaahs without doing anything special. And although they are pretty adorable, they are also incredibly disgusting. It's just a trait that is often skipped over in the pregnancy books and parental stories. But there are plenty of gross things babies do in their first year on earth that'll make you want to saw "eww" rather than "oooh."
In between the smiles and babbles, there is some nasty stuff happening. It's just that no one posts about this kind of stuff on social media. Because it is that horrible and horrifying. And yes, even the cutest most beautiful babies do them too.
Whether you're planning on having a baby, are currently pregnant, or in the throws of first time motherhood, consider this a word of warning. What you're about to read is the reality check no one is probably giving you. Of course, the nastier side of babies shouldn't take away from all their amazing traits. But it helps if you can mentally prepare for what you're about to witness.
Here are nine gross things a baby does in their first year of life, even though they're the cutest things ever.
1. Their Umbilical Cord Falls Off
I know this is a natural thing to happen, but when the stub of my first baby's umbilical cord fell off I wanted to puke. According to the Mayo Clinic, a baby's umbilical cord stump falls off within their first two weeks of life. You are, however, under no obligation to keep the stump when it does finally fall off.
2. They Pass Gas Constantly
According to Very Well, if an adult passes gas more than 23 times a day, it's abnormal. Although there isn't any information about the normal number of toots for a baby, I can attest to the fact that my baby passed way more than that. And it didn't smell good.
3. They Poop Pretty Much Non Stop
At some points in early motherhood it felt like I was literally knee deep in baby sh*t. Turns out, I basically was. According to the Baby Center, a newborn can have up to 10 bowel movements per day. The number drops one you introduce solids, but even then it still seems like a lot.
4. They Spit Up
According to the Mayo Clinic, spitting up in babies is totally normal and healthy (for the most part). They have muscle in their lower esophagus that takes time to mature, which means the contents in their belly come up quite a bit. Until this happens, you can expect some exorcist-like action. And yes, it will get all over pretty much everything.
5. They Put Everything In Their Mouth
According to Parents, babies explore their environment through "mouthing" as it's called. This means they're checking everything out with their mouths which, if you're a bit of a germaphobe, may freak you out.
6. They Gag On Foods
When I tried to feed my first baby steamed broccoli for the first time, I heard the most unnerving gagging noise come from her mouth. I was terrified that she was choking, but she wasn't. According to the About Kids Health website, many babies gag on textures that are new or not smooth due to a weak gag reflex. Most babies will grow this out eventually, and there are even things that parents can do to move it along.
7. They Don't Eat Neatly
Babies just can't eat neatly. Whether you feed them or they feed themselves, food is bound to end up all over their face and extremities. If you're an admitted neat freak, I recommend you find a way to cope with constant mess. Or you could just plastic wrap the heck out of everything.
8. They Touch Themselves
This isn't necessarily gross,but it can be kind of alarming. According to Parenting, your baby is simply exploring their genitals and seeing how things feel down there. This happens usually around the 5 to 7 month mark, and means nothing sexual.
9. They Drool And Give Really Wet Kisses
In the first nine months of life, babies drool regularly, according to the North Shore Pediatric Therapy website. Unless coupled with other troubling symptoms or signs of illness, drooling is a baby norm. Babies often drool while mouthing objects, babbling, or giving super soaker kisses. After the first year, drooling subsides and you won't have to carry a cloth around with you everywhere you go.
Thankfully, babies are so cute otherwise most of us wouldn't be able to stomach their grossness. Their toothless smiles and sweet smell (when they're clean) don't hurt either.