Fostering healthy infant-parent attachment

Fostering healthy infant-parent attachment

Parent-child attachment—the emotional bond between you and your child—begins right after birth and continues for the rest of your lives.

Here are some tips to help you build a healthy foundation of attachment with your baby.

Babies usually develop strong attachments to at least one person—in most cases, the principal caregiver. But they also form bonds with many people—moms and dads, grandparents and other caregivers.

The things you do when caring for your baby—comforting, feeding, rocking, bathing, touching, talking, singing—and responding to his or her calls for attention help to reinforce these bonds.

Responding quickly to your baby’s cries is the best way to show her that she is safe and loved. This should not be confused with spoiling your child. Babies cannot be spoiled. When they’re sick, upset or distressed, they need to know you’re there for them.

Why is attachment important?

It helps children develop self-confidence and trust, and know they’re loved and safe. And, it affects their brain development, too.

Parents, especially those who were emotionally hurt when they were children, are capable of five kinds of behaviours that can damage their own children’s sense of security and attachment. It’s important to know what those behaviours are and to avoid them. Our topic Dealing with mood changes after you’ve had your baby has helpful information about where you can get help.

To learn more about attachment and join activities that will help you build a strong bond with your baby visit a Best Start Hub in your neighbourhood.

 

This content was prepared and reviewed by the City of Greater Sudbury and its partners. However, it should not take the place of advice from your health care provider or other professionals working with you and your child. 

Notice a broken link or an error or omission in this content? Email beststart@greatersudbury.ca to let us know.