10 Baby Bonding Tips
That intense attachment doesn’t always happen overnight. Some moms feel it the second their baby is born, but others need days, weeks or months to experience it completely. If you don’t feel that connection right away, don’t worry — it’ll come. And even if you do, there’s always room for improvement. Try these ten tips to help you improve your bond with your baby.
Every time you hold your baby close, that bond will grow a little bit deeper. Pick her up, squeeze her tight and just be together. You’ll connect because of the feeling of having her so close, and she’ll soak in your smell and how you feel.
When you’re holding your baby, take your eyes away from your television and set down your book. Take that time to just look at her. She’ll look at you too. When she does, hold her gaze and make as much eye-to-eye contact as you can. It’s amazing how it feels to look into your baby’s eyes and have her look right back.
Feeding time is one of the most natural ways to bond with your baby. It doesn’t matter if you breast feed or bottle feed — you’re meeting your baby’s needs and both of you know that. It’s also a great opportunity for eye-to-eye contact and skin-to-skin contact.
Holding your baby close is a wonderful feeling, but there’s nothing like the feeling of skin-to-skin contact with your little one. In the beginning you’ll do it to provide her with your warmth, but even when she no longer needs that, keep it going. It’ll make you feel closer to each other and strengthen your bond.
Every time you calm and soothe your baby, your bond grows a little stronger. It grows for you because you know you can give her what she needs, and it grows for her because she learns to trust that you are there to provide for her.
It doesn’t take long for your baby to equate smiling with happiness. When you smile at her, she’ll be happy and smile back. This mutual happiness will deepen your bond.
You love a great massage, but did you know your baby does too? A tummy massage can soothe a belly ache, and a massage on the arms and legs just feels good. Use a baby lotion to give your baby a massage once every day or two.
Bath time is a great time for skin-to-skin contact, eye contact, smiles, silliness and fun. After a long day without a lot of time together, a bath is a great way for some one-on-one bonding time.
Your baby loves to hear your voice. Don’t hold back from conversation, even if she can’t respond. Talk to her all day long, telling her what you’re doing and why. Describe the things you see. Not only will she learn a lot about communication, but she’ll feel soothed by hearing your voice.
You may not be a rock star, but she doesn’t care. Sing to your baby. Sing her happy songs, silly songs, sad songs, country songs or rap — whatever strikes you (just keep it appropriate!). All she’ll hear is how much you love her and want to see her smile.