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Older baby

UPDATE: There is specific advice on parenting babies and young children during the Covid-19 outbreak.

As your baby gets older, they will want to move, play and interact more and are, generally awake for longer during the day. Older baby’s brains can be built by:

Talk: Keep talking to your baby and show interest by naming items they point to. This communication (sometimes called ‘serve and return’) builds pathways in tiny brains at a fast rate. Keep sharing books and ask your Health Visitor if you haven’t received your Bookstart pack, bursting with ideas and books to share. Also check out daily reading activities which are posted for families every weekday at 10:15am on all our Facebook pages which can be found here.

Play: Play ideas can include more tummy time building to crawling and pulling up to stand when they are ready. Babies are natural explorers and will be curious so keeping rooms baby-safe is crucial to preventing injuries.

Relax: Finding time to relax with your older baby and enjoying them in their less active moments can be bonding for you both. Certain times for relaxing together, such as before bedtime, a massage after a bath can form part of a routine, helping baby’s feel secure.

Cuddle: Cuddling your child helps create a secure attachment and promotes bonding and positive interactions. There are times you can build cuddling in to your child’s daily routine such a as hug before bedtime or before they go into nursery or to another care giver. The most important thing to remember is the act of cuddling brings you closer together.

Respond: Accessing and responding to your child’s needs is an essential part of every day parenting. Your child may begin laugh and clap and you can respond by doing the same (sometimes called ‘serve and return’). If you child cries they may be hungry or just want your attention- the important thing is you respond in a positive manner which will promote a secure parent/care giver- child attachment. This will then lead to healthy development thoughout the lifecourse.