Do you know 90% brain development happens by 1 year and a mom can help to boost brain development in her child?
Do you know your baby can listen and even respond to your sounds around him/her in the second half of pregnancy?
I remember talking to my daughters when I was pregnant and researchers say that it is a great way to bond with the child. Once they are born, 0-3 months is the time when your baby take in information and tries to process everything around them.
You have to look very closely to notice your baby doing little things which help him to get used to the environment around them. But it’s also important to know that all children develop differently. As moms we tend to get panicky fast, so its ok to just let it be but if you really feel your baby is not reacting to things as other babies of similar age, consult your doctor for an evaluation.
The first year of life is the time when your child’s development will change fast. Cognitive development at this time will look very different each month.
Here are few tips to boost brain development in infants –
- Talk to your baby – I know it might feel silly but towards the second half of your pregnancy, your baby can listen to you and even react to it. You can even sing to him or read a book too. This is going to help you bond better. In first few months after birth, make sure you do all this too as they can recognise the song and voice they heard when they were inside. It helps them to calm down too.
- Touch – Hold the baby when you are talking or singing to them. Cuddle her, pick her up and rock gently. Also, massage is a great way to boost brain development. Massage with a good oil daily as it also helps to form a bond between mom and her baby.
- Fun activities – Singing, playing, and freedom of movement is also important. Once they are 5-6 months old, you can try some tummy time and allow them to explore the surroundings. Movement is good for the brain development. Do not keep them in your lap all the time.
- Toy time – Your baby needs simple and fun toys and not necessarily the expensive ones. My daughters used to enjoy play and activity gym a lot and I feel it is very good for a baby’s development. It allows them to explore and encourage them to reach out to all the small toys hanging on it. Other than this, the toys like rattles, teethers, and musical toys are also good for a baby’s brain development.
- Good nutrition – Good nutrition is important for good brain development and it starts right from pregnancy. A mom must eat healthy food with a good amount of essential nutrients to boost brain development in the baby. Omega-3 fatty acids, especially DHA have a great impact on the production of neurons in the brain. Eat foods such as fish, walnuts, flaxseed, and eggs for omega 3 fatty acids. Another important mineral is iron as it helps to promote the growth of red blood cells which carry oxygen to the baby’s brain.
After birth, Breastmilk is the best food you can give your baby for the first 6 months of life and beyond. Use feeding time as brain building time too. So, make eye contact, smile and have skin contact with your baby while feeding.
Breastmilk is the best for first six months and it is supposed to help in infant cognition as it has essential nutrients like DHA AND Vitamin E which work together to make sure your baby grows up to be a smart baby.
As your baby grows, be sure you are giving foods rich in iron and variety of foods with all nutrients, like fruits and vegetables for good infant cognition.
- Respond – Parents normally pick up the baby when they cry or hungry. Try to respond to even small cues like cooing sounds, or look directly in eyes when talking to them. But on the other hand, make sure you don’t pick them up as soon as they cry. Let them learn self-soothing too.
- Stay relaxed – Last but not least, just relax as a parent. Provide them with a healthy and happy environment as babies tend to pick up the anxiety pretty fast. Everything your baby sees and hears, smells or experiences stimulates the brain. Infant cognition is a result of many things a mom does and she has to be a teacher, facilitator and a guide for her child to boost it.
These are some tips which helped me as a mom to bond better with my daughters and also to boost brain development. Do you also have any pointers from your experience? Do let us know in comments.