How Physical Contact Affects a Baby's Development

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When you are a new parent, you hear a lot of conflicting information as to what it takes to care for your baby, but understanding just how physical contact affects a baby’s development is crucial. This is one of those things that you don’t necessarily consider until you have spent time with your baby and seen it firsthand. You may even think that you are spoiling your baby, but there is a very real link between physical touch and development that you should be aware of. It’s a subtle, more indirect type of link but real nonetheless. You need to know just how positively you can affect your child with the way you touch him or her.

When you think of how physical contact affects a baby’s development, consider the needs a baby has, because this matters greatly. If you are leaving your baby crying in a crib, this sends a message to him or her that you aren’t there when the baby really needs you. Contrast this with when you pick up and hold the baby when he or she needs you. This is nurturing, and it will help not only with babies’ physical development but with their emotional and mental development, too. The way you pick up and hold your baby when he or she is crying for you is as important as proper feeding. Your baby needs you, and this is an essential way to care for him or her!

Your Touch Can Make a Huge Difference

Another thing to think about with regard to how physical contact affects a baby’s development is the way in which you can help to soothe the baby. There’s a reason why so many new parents are learning all about infant massage, and that’s because it can go a long way. If your baby is having digestive issues or having a hard time calming down when he or she is crying, such as in colic, then your touch can make all the difference in the world. If you can learn how to massage your baby’s stomach, feet, and hands, you will notice a huge difference in how he or she calms down. This is yet another meaningful way of nurturing and caring for your baby.

So when you are worried about how physical contact affects a baby’s development, or if it even matters that much, think again. You won’t spoil your baby, but you will send the message that you are there for the baby and will help to calm him or her down. This can help your baby to grow and thrive as well as to feel loved and cherished. Babies need that love, especially when they are young and can’t properly communicate their needs. So be ready to help them through difficult moments with your touch, and know that, moving forward, this helps their development in every sense of the word.