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Cognitive Growth in Newborns

Overview

Cognition is the ability to think, learn, and remember. It develops as your baby grows.

Your baby is born with around 100 billion brain cells (neurons). These cells form connections with each other called synapses. These connections carry messages between the cells in the brain and from the brain to the body. During a baby's first month, the body makes more connections and improves how the brain cells are able to work together. This is called cognitive growth.

You can help boost your baby's brain growth by providing a loving, comforting, and stimulating environment. Your baby learns from every interaction. For example, when you respond to cries of hunger by offering food and comfort, your baby learns to trust and depend on you.

Most synapses are made during childhood. They allow a person to continue learning over their lifetime.

Credits

Current as of: September 20, 2021

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Susan C. Kim MD - Pediatrics
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
John Pope MD - Pediatrics

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