Quiz: How Much Do You Know About Caring for a Newborn

Have a baby on the way and not sure your skills are up to snuff? Take our fun quiz to find out how much you know about newborns.

Quiz How Much Do You Know About Newborns MAIN

Do you have a little one on the way? If you’ve never cared for a newborn, it’s normal to feel a little nervous about bringing a baby into your home. Will you know how much they need to eat? Or even how to change a diaper? Take this fun newborn care quiz to find out how much you know about babies. 

Newborn Care Quiz: How Much Do You Know About Babies?

1. What are the benefits of leaving vernix on baby?

2. How often a newborn eats depends on:

3. It's normal for baby to lose what percentage of their body weight in the first few days?

4. When should baby ideally have their first bath?

5. All routine newborn interventions are important for baby’s health and should not be skipped or delayed.

6. How much do newborns sleep?

7. Which of these is a sure sign of constipation in babies?

8. Newborns learn to smile:

9. Fifty percent of newborns fall outside of the 25th-75th percentiles for height and weight.

10. What is cradle cap?

11. What is the witching hour?

12. Exclusively breastfed baby poop is:

13. The Moro Reflex (baby’s startle reflex) can be triggered by:

14. For safety, newborns should never sleep with:

15. Can you breastfeed while sick?

16. The umbilical cord should be clamped and cut:


Want to make sure your skills are up to snuff? Review this cheat sheet for a more comprehensive look at some of the facts in the fun newborn care quiz you just took. 

The cheese-like substance that babies are born with on their skin is called…

Vernix—a sticky, white, cheese-like coating on your baby that protects baby from germs and exposure to meconium. It also helps support baby’s temperature and helps mom and baby bond.

Don’t wipe this off. Let it soak in (or rub it in) for optimal health and immune support. 

How often a newborn eats depends on…

How old they are, what they are eating (breastmilk or formula), and how often they ask to feed. Learn more about how often babies eat and how much they should eat at each feeding.

In the first few days of life, baby can lose…

About 7 percent of their birth weight (3.5 percent if they are formula-fed). Don’t be alarmed—this is totally normal. As long as baby starts to gain weight after a few days and stays on an upward growth curve, they are probably perfectly normal. Learn more about normal weight gain in newborns.

Baby’s first bath should be…

Five to seven days after birth. Why so long? The vernix needs time to soak into the baby’s skin. Waiting to bathe baby also helps reduce the chances of hypoglycemia and hypothermia, reduces stress levels, and improves breastfeeding success. Learn more about delaying baby’s first bath and how to give one when it’s time.

Routine newborn interventions are…

Not necessarily best for all babies. You and your healthcare provider should work together to come up with a safe plan of action for your family. Learn more about alternatives to routine procedures, such as the vitamin K shot, circumcision, and bathing baby.

Newborns sleep approximately…

16-18 hours a day. If baby is sleeping, they probably need it. There are exceptions though, like if baby isn’t feeding well. In this case, your healthcare provider may recommend waking baby to make sure they get enough to eat. Learn more about newborn sleep.

The one symptom that almost always points to newborn constipation is…

When poops are hard and dry (like rabbit droppings). While there are other symptoms that may signal constipation (like gas or bloating), the most important one is the texture of the poop. Learn more about baby poop (including color, frequency, and other signals).

The color and texture of normal, exclusively-breastfed baby poop is…

Bright or mustard yellow (sometimes a bit orange) and has a loose and seedy or grainy texture. But just because your baby’s poop doesn’t fit this description doesn’t mean there’s something wrong. For example, there are a few shades of green in baby poop that are nothing to worry about. 

Newborns learn to smile…

In utero! Believe it or not, babies learn to smile way before they take their first breath. Many moms swear that baby is smiling in his ultrasound picture, and they may be right. Experts believe that babies learn to smile sometime around 26 weeks gestation. Learn more about your baby’s smile here.

As far as newborn weight goes…

Fifty percent of newborns fall outside of the 25th to 75th percentiles for height and weight. Many new parents worry if their child isn’t near the 50th percentile for weight and height, but the truth is, many kids will fall outside this range and still grow normally. What pediatricians are really looking for is an upward growth curve. Learn more about baby weight

Cradle cap is…

Harmless flaky skin on top of baby’s head. While experts don’t know for sure what causes cradle cap (there are a few theories), they agree that it’s not anything to worry about—it’s mostly just a nuisance issue. There are also many natural remedies for cradle cap.

The witching hour is…

The witching hour is a time of day (usually between late afternoon until just before a newborn’s bedtime) when baby cries more, is fussier than normal, and requires more soothing and feeding. Many babies cluster feed at this time, too. Luckily, there are some things you can do to get yourself and baby through this difficult part of the day.

The Moro Reflex (baby’s startle reflex) can be triggered by…

  • Loud sudden noises
  • Changes in light (opening a curtain for example)
  • Sudden touch of quick movement (like standing up while holding baby)
  • Shifting movement (like being lowered into a crib)

The Moro reflex is two-part. First, your newborn flails her arms and inhales quickly (she may cry too). Then she curls into the fetal position for protection. This reflex obviously wakes baby from important sleep. When baby wakes, so do mom and dad. Luckily there are some easy ways to prevent this reflex from triggering.

For safety, newborns should never sleep with…

A blanket. Babies shouldn’t sleep with blankets until they’re at least 1 year old and strong enough to roll over and move blankets away from the face. Instead, newborns can sleep in sleep sacks (a wearable sleeping bag) that keep baby warm without the risk of suffocation or SIDS. Find out more about babies sleeping with blankets here.

When mama is sick, breastfeeding should…

Usually continue—unless you have a serious illness (like HIV or tuberculosis). Mild illnesses, like the cold or flu, are no reason to stop nursing your baby. In fact, your breastmilk will give baby some of the antibodies you are producing to fight your illness. That means continuing to breastfeed can actually help baby avoid getting sick. Learn more about nursing when sick

Baby’s umbilical cord should be clamped and cut…

When the cord stops pulsing and is limp and white in color. The exact time for this can vary, so it’s important to look at the cord for signs that it’s time.

Delayed cord clamping ensures that baby gets all of the oxygen and iron-rich blood he can get. This helps reduce the chances of anemia, gives baby important stem cells, and improves breastfeeding, fine motor skills and social skills. Learn more about delayed cord clamping.

What was your score? Share in the comments below.

How did you stack up in our newborn care quiz?

Genevieve Howland

About the Author

Genevieve Howland is a childbirth educator and breastfeeding advocate. She is the bestselling author of The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth and creator of the Mama Natural Birth Course. A mother of three, graduate of the University of Colorado, and YouTuber with over 130,000,000 views, she helps mothers and moms-to-be lead healthier and more natural lives.


  1. Not really

  2. I got Baby Aficionado! Phew! I am expecting baby 5 so I was hoping I wasn’t too far off! ?

  3. The quiz is really incomplete. For instance, the question about vernix, vernix absolutely has a purpose. But you only give a wrong answer, or absolutely no purpose as choices for an answer. There are a couple others like that as well. I know these are just for fun, but it would be helpful if they were truly accurate. Also, questions such as when is the ideal time for babies bath can vary very widely. I am a mom of seven, so this isn’t coming from someone who is just an Internet website troll LOL

    • I love that the first comments are from moms of many! Lol! I got the smile question wrong, but I was thinking of social smiles.

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