Taking care of your newborn can be very stressful for a new parent, which is why the first three months of their lives are often referred to as ‘the fourth trimester’. Since your infant is quickly developing and adjusting to the outside world, they often experience mood swings that can be tough to handle. Newborns are quick to cry when their needs aren’t met and sometimes it’s hard to decipher what it is they exactly require. By showing your infant love and providing them with care, both of you will come out of this fourth trimester with an unbreakable bond. Here are some little ways to bond with your newborn baby and bring your parent-child relationship to another level.
Breastfeed Your Newborn
The most natural way to bond with your baby is to breastfeed them. While it provides much-needed nourishment for your baby’s development, breastfeeding is a perfect way to come in close contact with your small one and feel their heartbeat sync with yours. Your infant will enjoy your natural scent and your soft touch. Newborns don’t have their sight fully developed yet; it can only reach about eight to twelve inches which is roughly the distance between your faces during nursing. Take this opportunity to share eye contact with your baby and deeply gaze into their tiny eyes, strengthening your bond. Furthermore, breastfeeding is known to release the two hormones that promote attachment and relaxation – oxytocin and prolactin. Be thankful that mother nature has this amazing way to promote the mother-toddler relationship! If for some reason breastfeeding is not an option, don’t fret. Bottle feeding is another lovely way to bond with your infant.
Encourage Skin-to-Skin Contact
Newborns are very responsive to touch from the moment they come into the world. Having your baby rested on top of your bare skin is called “skin-to-skin” contact and is one of the ultimate ways to bond with your baby. Just like nursing, it releases oxytocin while it also lowers your baby’s stress levels. These are not the only benefits to skin-to-skin contact as it is also known to stabilize your infant’s body temperature and heartbeat. Is there anything more wonderful than cuddling up to your baby? However, there will be some days where you’ll be too busy to snuggle after feeding, which is where weighted infant toys come into the picture. They look adorable while also providing some of the same soothing benefits as skin-to-skin contact such as decreasing your infant’s levels of stress.
Babywearing Is Convenient And Adorable
Another way to promote bonding with your baby is to accessorize with it. All jokes aside, babywearing is probably one of the best ways to strengthen the bond with your newborn. It is very similar to skin-to-skin contact because you will be having your baby just as close, just with some layers of clothing in between you. Sling, wrap, and carrier are all great options for babywearing, so pick one that suits your needs. It is also infinitely more convenient to have your baby wrapped on you since you will have your hands free to do some chores around the house.
Establish A Routine
One of the most important things to have in mind when caring for your infant is that they’re experiencing incredible amounts of stress in their first months. Having a certain daily routine will alleviate the stress they’re experiencing while also promoting the healthiest development. In your routine, make sure to leave some time for parent-baby playtime. Don’t be too rigid with your routine though. An added benefit to having a schedule is that you will more easily notice things your baby dislikes based on their expression. Knowing their likes and dislikes is sure to enrich your relationship.
It’s extremely important to bond with your baby while they’re still an infant. Breastfeeding, skin-to-skin contact, and babywearing are the best little ways to strengthen your bond. Furthermore, it’s imperative to establish a daily routine that will help you get to know your baby’s likes and dislikes a bit more.
Diana Smith is a full time mom of two beautiful girls interested in business and marketing related topics.
In her free time she enjoys exercising and preparing healthy meals for her family.