How to Build a Secure Attachment Bond with Your Baby
A strong attachment with your newborn sets up your child for life. These parenting tips can show you how to react to your baby’s cues and thus establish the best possible foundation for life for them.
What is Secure Attachment?
A secure attachment bond comes from the wordless emotional exchange that bonds the two of you, causing your infant to feel calm and safe enough to experience optimal development of their nervous system. Secure attachment provides your growing child with the best foundation for life: your child will possess a healthy self-awareness, an eagerness to learn, consideration for and trust in others.
Parenting Tips for Creating Secure Attachment
Secure attachment does not happen overnight. It is an ongoing interaction between you and your baby. As time passes, it will become easier to interpret the signals, understand the cries and respond to your baby’s needs for love, comfort, food and rest—be patient with yourself and your baby as you learn about each other.
Secure Attachment Starts with Taking Care of Yourself
Babies communicate the best when they are in an alert and quiet state, and so do you. Although it may be difficult, it is crucial to take care of yourself to build a secure attachment bond with your infant. Try to get enough sleep, ask for support around the house, especially in the newborn stages. Scheduling some time away can help to renew your energies or calm you down. Being an anxious caregiver can actually add to a baby’s stress.
Tip 1: Learn to Comprehend Your Baby’s Cues Which are Unique to Him
From birth, each baby is unique in their personality and preferences. Each baby’s nervous system is unique as well. Some babies might be soothed by activity and noise whereas others might prefer quiet and calm. The key is to learn to be like a “sensory detective” and learn your baby’s cues. Also learn how best to respond. For example, observe your baby’s facial expressions and movements for clues about their sensory needs.
You can also pay attention to the kinds of sounds, movements, and environments your baby enjoys. Some babies are comforted by motion, such as being rocked, while others react to sounds like soft music, or a change of environment such as being brought outside.
Tip 2: Sleeping, Eating and Opportunities for Secure Attachment
Many of your baby’s early cues are about the need for proper rest and food. Increasing the frequency of feedings or adding in extra time for rest when appropriate can hugely improve your baby’s ability to interact and engage when awake.
Without proper rest, a baby cannot be alert, calm and ready to interact with you. Babies sleep a lot, and their sleep signals can come more frequently than you may expect. Often, babies who are too tired can move frenetically and act hyper-alert. You may mistake this energy for an invitation to engage, but really, it is your baby’s way of communicating that naptime should have been 20 minutes ago.
Hunger will also be the cause of many early signals and signs from your baby. Schedules are helpful, but developmental changes and growth spurts can cause your baby’s needs to change every few weeks so it helps to closely observe their unique cues.
Tip 3: Talk, Laugh, and Play with Your Baby
The importance of playing with, holding, having fun, and sharing happiness with your baby cannot be mentioned more. Touch, smiles, laughter, and interaction are as vital to a baby’s development as sleep or food. Your tone of voice, body language, and loving touch are all important means of communicating with your baby. For example, you can exchange smiles, funny faces or happy coos with your baby.
Tip 4: Secure Attachment Does Not Need You to be the “Perfect” Parent
You don’t have to be a perfect parent in order to develop a good attachment with your baby. Just do your best, and don’t worry if you don’t always know what your baby wants. What makes attachment secure, rather than insecure, is the responsiveness and quality of the interaction with your baby and a desire to notice and repair a missed signal. You need to understand your baby’s cues one third of the time, not every time.
Bonding continues after the child grows up, and there is a need to build strong family bonds.
Genesis Childcare 1989
At Genesis Childcare 1989, our teachers are passionate about children. We love and cherish each of them. Our holistic curriculum develops them to their fullest potential.
If you’re looking for infant care in Tampines or anywhere in the east of Singapore, do go for a trip to our Nurture Infant House. With over 30 years of specialised experience, we have nurtured thousands of infants, toddlers and preschoolers alike.
Feel free to book an appointment through WhatsApp. You can visit us at the following venues:
Genesis Childcare 1989 (Tampines)
Blk 433, Tampines Street 43, #01-63 (S) 520433
Tel: +65 9666 4141
Genesis Childcare 1989 (Taman Jurong)
Blk 153, Yung Ho Road, #01-41 (S) 610153
Tel: +65 9666 4141
Nurture Infant House (Tampines)
(2 to 18 months Infants)
Blk 433, Tampines Street 43, #01-61 (S) 520433
Tel: +65 9666 4141