Ten tips to make your baby smile 

 Originally Written: April 1, 2009

By  Hanna Trafford

Last Updated on April 1, 2009 by Hanna Trafford

baby_laughingWhat is better than listening to your baby laugh? There isn’t a person in the world that wouldn’t have a smile on their face when hearing that natural, infectious sound. Here are some ways to get your baby to smile and laugh – and for sure, happy baby makes for happy mommy!

  1. Stretching can feel reeeaaaal good! Lay your baby on its back on a blanket and gently extend left leg and right arm away from the body. Follow by slowly hugging right knee up to the chest, gently moving it toward the left leg. Repeat the moves with the opposite side, making sure the movements are slow and gentle and remember to keep smiling while doing these stretches!
  2. Putting on a happy face – remember that your baby loves looking at you! Flash you goofiest smile, open eyes wide , play a little peekaboo! Lean close and kiss baby’s nose. Whatever puts your smiling face in her field of vision will result in a big smile
  3. Same is good – you don;t have to keep inventing new trick to make your baby smile and laugh! Babies are very content and happy when they know what’s coming up. Like a big cuddle before bedtime, or signing "you are my sunshine" over and over…. happiness is a very simple thing when you are a tine creature!
  4. Hand it over! By the time you baby is 3-4 months old, it will love to grab onto things. One of the easiest ways to get your baby smiling or giggling is to hold a colourful toy in front of him ot her and as the little hand reaches for it, don’t move it away – hand it over!
  5. Let’s get going! – Tiny babies, even those in a pre-walking stage love to pretend they are actually standing and walking. Hold your baby under his arms and start bouncing him between a mini-obstacle course of things like over-turned laundry baskets, boxes, pillows or any other smaller items in your household. When the baby lands, let him put some weight on his legs – make him believe he is big and strong and watch that smile!
  6. Happy feet – babies love foot massage!  Even if their feet are not sore and tired like yours may be, your gentle touch will do wonders to their feet. For a quick and easy massage, apply gentle pressure to each of your baby’s tiny toes, then rub the palm of your hand on his heels. Press thumbs up and across the little feet and finish with a kiss on each big toe!
  7. Happy tummies – without a doubt, calm tummies make for contented babies. If you feel that your baby’s tummy is a little tense or see your baby drawing his knees up to his stomach – especially after a meal. Lay your baby gently on his stomach and pat his back, or lay him on his stomach and do a bicycle paddle with his legs. This will relieve pressures that are bothering his still developing digestive system
  8. Pacify me! Sucking is your baby’s most instinctive reflex. But even after feeding, the urge to suck can make him a bit unhappy. Try to hand over the pacifier and even his fingers (yes – it is OK and not likely to develop a bad habit)
  9. Dance with me! Put on your favourite songs and holding your baby in your arms, have a little dance! Moving to the rhythm of- for example calypso music -or signing along is sure to put a smile on that little face
  10. Tell me a secret! This one works well on a baby that is crying – or screaming. Get very close to his ear and start whispering a story – he will most likely stop crying since you can’t hear of you are screaming and you will likely see that unhappy face replaced with content one or even a smile!

I am sure there are many other way to make your baby happy – please share yours!

Hanna Trafford

Hanna is the mother of two grown sons Dan and Dusan Nedelko, and is also the Grandmother to Jax, Cohen and Mila. She is the lead editor of Mama Knows and is hoping to create an exchange of communications with other grandmothers, mothers and daughters - giving everyone the opportunity to learn and share about everything that is "Mama"

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