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Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care

3.71  ·  Rating Details ·  1,583 Ratings  ·  138 Reviews
Generations of parents have relied on Dr. Spock's timeless bestseller. It remains the source book, the most authoritative and reliable guide available. Collaborating with Dr. Steven J. Parker, Dr. Spock has now updated and expanded this reference to meet the changes and challenges of the next century. Organized for fast and easy reference, and including entirely new sectio ...more
Paperback, 976 pages
Published June 1st 1998 by Simon & Schuster (first published July 14th 1946)
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Another book I am reading for the book I am writing. One of my favorite outtakes thus far from this book updated in 1962:
"[A father:] might make the formula on Sunday. If the baby is on a 2 A.M. bottle in the early weeks, when the mother is still pretty tired, this is a good feeding for the father to take over. It's nice for him, if he can, to go along to the doctor's office for the baby's regular visits. It gives him a chance to bring up those questions that are bothering him and that he doesn'
Susan Baranoff
Mar 25, 2009 Susan Baranoff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Susan by: parents-to-be and parents of kids under the age of 12
Probably the most important book in my library for the first 10 years of my kids' lives. It was the book to turn to when they had spots or fevers or just would not go to sleep.... Dr. Spock always gave common sense advice. The reference guide to symptoms in the back was invaluable more than once in answering the huge question every new parent has -- it is 2:00 in the morning - "should I call the doctor for this, or can it wait until morning?"
Alyce Rocco
My mother gave all her daughters, daughter-in-laws, many nieces, then started with granddaughters as they made her a great-grandma, a copy of Dr. Spock's Baby and Childcare. My copy was a much earlier edition than this one.

I referred back to the book many times as my babies matured into toddlers, and so on. I say it was okay, because I never read it cover to cover ~ it got boring.

Many of my peers felt intimidated by the book's advice, fearing they would do something wrong. I do not recall exact
Brandon O'Neill
Dec 19, 2010 Brandon O'Neill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We've read though the chapters on pregnancy. Now I guess it is almost time for the infant section. Yikes!!
Sep 13, 2008 Kelly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent Resource for quick infant/child health info.
Madhulika Liddle
Benjamin Spock Robert Needlman – Baby and Childcare

When my baby daughter arrived, advice, much of it unasked for, poured in from friends and relatives. Buy a pillow for her. Put honey on her pacifier to help her through teething. Give her orange juice. Put her to bed with a bottle full of milk so she doesn’t need to get up in the middle of the night to be fed.

All of which, thanks to Dr Spock’s Baby & Childcare (9th Edition, with Dr Robert Needlman), I managed to discover – well in time – to
Mike Smith
Feb 09, 2013 Mike Smith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: me, genius
This is a wonderful book for ALL parents to read. Actually, it's a wonderful book for ANYONE to read, even children. It discusses human development in a way that is useful for those who are guiding a child's development and those interested in their own development - which should be everyone. Most importantly the book is written to educate and encourage, rather than to preach and frighten. It helps the parent approach every situation with the basic knowledge needed. It also gives great resources ...more
This is a book that I read the sections I need when I want to know, rather than reading cover to cover. Unlike some guides, it's arranged topically rather than by age, so skipping around is really a necessity. It gives some great advice and gives a lot of the "whys" of childcare - why shouldn't you save the extra food from the baby jar? Body fluids are sterile to the body they came out of... so what if saliva gets into the rest of the food? Turns out that (here's a reminder from 4th grade scienc ...more
Aug 01, 2014 Andrea rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes there's reviewing a single book on its own (like with a novel), but other times you have to review a book in the context of other books out there (like with a parenting advice book). Dr Spock's classic baby and child care book is definitely a case of the latter category. Reading it now, after having read many more detailed books, I can't help but wish that this was the only book on the subject I ever read. I like to imagine myself as a low-stress mother who only felt the need to consul ...more
Jul 04, 2008 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Except we're reading the 1954 edition. The "in place of a crib, you can place your baby in a bureau drawer or a clothes basket" edition. His take on post-partum depression is pretty good, too. Honestly, it is. Gotta love it. Mostly reading it for fun and because Mom gave it to me. Worked for her. I don't think any of us turned out that horribly. Can't find the chapter where he says it's ok to put netting on top of a play pen (poor Edie!), but I"m sure it's in there.
Jul 22, 2013 Annelisa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book has entered our cultural legacy as one of the most important ones published within the last century. I've been able to appreciate it for that fact, but it hasn't stopped my overall disillusionment with the book and its premise. Part of it may stem from the fact that the book is constantly being updated. (I much prefer the older, original versions, even if solely for its value as an historical document rather than a must-have for parenting advice). Naturally I understand why, as the wo ...more
Oct 11, 2013 Marvin marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I never read this book and don't plan to because I don't like books about baby and child care. But I want to warn you people that Dr. Benjamin Spock was a really nice guy. I met him in 1970 during a anti-war rally. He was very approachable and loved to chat. I found out that his proudest moment was not when he wrote his book and it became a huge bestseller but when he won a gold medal in the Olympics in 1924. (that is a fact!) He swore a little when he talked about President Johnson (He called h ...more
Jennifer B.
Apr 16, 2016 Jennifer B. rated it really liked it
I grew up with this book. First, my mother would check it when I had a complaint. As soon as I got old enough to understand what I was reading, she turned it over to me and told me to check myself. Dr. Spock calmed a lot of my fears and never let me down.
Jun 28, 2015 Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read different editions of this childcare classic.
I bought one of the additions that came out in the mid 60s for a quarter from
I wanted to see one of the old recipes on how to make infant formula.
Varsha Shastri
It was good read. Works well as a reference book. However since internet has info about most of the baby care related stuff, this book was not too helpful for me. I liked the babycenter website much better.
Delphine Du toit
My sister gave me this book when I was pregnant with my first baby. It became my Bible. I imagine it would be quite out of sync with 21st Century parenting philosophy though
Sep 28, 2013 Leah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
terrifying. could not finish.

This passage: "Even when feelings during pregnancy are primarily positive, there may be a letdown when the baby actually arrives. Parents may expect to recognize the baby immediately as their own flesh and blood, to respond with an overwhelming rush of maternal and paternal feelings, and to bond like epoxy. But in many cases, this doesn't happen on the first day or even in the first week. Completely normal negative feelings often pop up. A good and loving parent may
Jun 18, 2014 Catherine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
we love this book as a quick reference. its very factual and middlenof the road which is nice.
Aug 24, 2015 Cynda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-medical
I read Dr spock over and over when I had my baby eons ago. Helped me to trust muself.
Mar 16, 2013 Sophoula rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
my mother read this when my brother was born, and i assume she read it when i was born, too. as far as i can tell, i grew up in tip-top shape, so i think i have dr. spock to thank for that, (THANK YOU FOR KEEPING ME ALIVE), since mothers, understandably, cannot even begin to comprehend the 24,243,259,964,395 needs of babies. truthfully, i still have that well-worn copy my mother toted around when my brother was little, and sometimes i like to look at it and reconcile its message with the feminis ...more
Christopher Calo
This book holds a lot of good info for the new parents
Jan 15, 2012 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intended as a resource for parents who have children of all ages, I would only this book as a supplement to a more detailed book. Spock's aim is for breadth, not depth. Although what it written seems sound ( I highlighted and dog-eared relevant pages), I stopped about 20% in, since I only have a two year old and am expecting our second child. This book contains up to date information and resources, but by the time I will need to use the adolescent section, this book will be outdated. Still, I ma ...more
Mar 22, 2015 Meghan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfic-self-help
Helpful resource, especially with babies.
Samar Dey
Oct 12, 2014 Samar Dey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is a bible, a must read for every parent.
Max Ostrovsky
So with a daughter on the way, I've found myself reading rearing books. I'm getting great information, but only made it as far as the twos.

Where are the dragons? Ninja assassins? Robots and their laws?

There wasn't even one chapter on where in the nursery is best for katana placement. Seriously. I have no idea where to put my swords. Spock was no help for that.

It's funny saying (or rather thinking) that. Usually, most Vulcans are good in a pinch.

I think that joke is too old, but that's the mo
Chongchong Tre
i like book
Jonathan Smith
Oct 22, 2016 Jonathan Smith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredibly thorough and all-encompassing.

As a parent and school-based Speech-Language Pathologist, I highly recommend this book. It has sections about every topic you can think of relating to kids. It is a long and factual book, so it is not a quick read. Some might find it better to use like a reference book, as needed. Others may want to skim parts that they already feel well-versed in. Dr. Spock was ahead of his time, and this book is completely up-to-date and fact based.
Hanaa Ummuslim
الكتاب ملئ بالمعلومات القيمة، بس النوع ده من المعلومات (الرعاية والصحة) أنا فضلت المصادر المسموعة والمشاهدة أكثر بكثير من المكتوبة
ومن أفضل المصادر اللي شوفتها فيديوهات رولا قطامي موجودة على اليوتيوب

I'm currently reading the 40th edition of this classic book. Of course, some of the information is dated, such as how to prepare bottles, but so far Dr. Spock's general philosophy on child rearing seems reasonable. Interestingly, my parents used this book when I was a baby; hopefully that's not where they got some of their funny ideas! I guess I'll find out as I read more.

I quit reading this as it was so dated. I found the Sears books to be more up-to-date and relevant to my parenting approach.
Aug 28, 2012 TailFeather rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
My mother in law gave this to us when I was pregnant. She meant well, but I could only slog through a couple of chapters before I gave up in disgust. This was the 80's, not the 50's.

I can't remember exactly what I read, but it took him a long time to get to the point. Which, after awhile seemed like he was grasping at supposition a lot of the time. I do remember thinking, "Oh give me a break!" more than once. I'm glad we were smart enough not to take this book seriously.
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Benjamin McLane Spock was an American pediatrician whose book Baby and Child Care, published in 1946, is one of the biggest best-sellers of all time. Its revolutionary message to mothers was that "you know more than you think you do." Spock was the first pediatrician to study psychoanalysis to try to understand children's needs and family dynamics.
More about Benjamin Spock...

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“The children who are appreciated for what they are, even if they are homely, or clumsy, or slow, will grow up with confidences in themselves - happy. They will have a spirit that will make the best of all the capacities that they have, and of all the opportunities that come their way. They will make light of any handicaps.” 28 likes
“Your baby doesn’t need a pillow for her head, and you should not use one. Likewise, it’s best to keep stuffed animals out of your baby’s crib or cradle; little babies don’t care much about them, and they may pose a suffocation” 1 likes
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