Does holding a newborn actually affect brain development?

Research has dem- onstrated that nurturing touch actually helps infants gain weight and develop healthy relationships with caregivers, as holding and stroking an infant stimulates the brain to release important hormones necessary for growth.

Is it OK to hold newborn all the time?

You can't spoil a baby. Contrary to popular myth, it's impossible for parents to hold or respond to a baby too much, child development experts say. Infants need constant attention to give them the foundation to grow emotionally, physically and intellectually.

What can affect a baby's brain development?

How well a brain develops depends on many factors in addition to genes, such as:
  • Proper nutrition starting in pregnancy.
  • Exposure to toxins or infections.
  • The child's experiences with other people and the world.

What happens if you don't hold a baby properly?

Your baby's head and neck muscles are very weak for the first few months. If you pick them up by or under their arms, you risk injuring their arms or shoulders. Worse, their head will dangle and could flop around, potentially causing a brain injury.

Is it OK to hold newborn head?

Picking up a newborn baby

Take care with your newborn's head, especially around the fontanelles. Always support your newborn's head and neck. To pick up baby, slide one hand under baby's head and neck and the other hand under their bottom. Bend your knees to protect your back.

Responsive parenting and it’s effect on your baby’s brain development

What happens if you don't hold a newborn's neck?

The biggest risks to your newborn are suffocation and infection," says Wendy Hasson, MD, a Portland, Oregon, pediatrician board certified in both general and critical care pediatrics. Still, it's important to provide head and neck support for your newborn.

Is it OK to pick baby up by armpits?

Don't pick up a baby under their arms.

It makes a baby's arms unavailable for self-comfort or support, and it can interfere with their breathing because their ribs are held.

Why is holding a newborn important?

“Skin-to-skin contact appears to provide an optimal environment for fetal to neonatal adaptation after birth and can help to maintain body temperature and adequate blood glucose levels in healthy term newborn infants, as well as providing an ideal opportunity to establish early bonding behaviours.”

How long should I hold my newborn?

The longer you hold your baby, the better. Any amount of time is good, but it is best to try for at least 1 to 2 hours each day.

Why is it important to hold your baby after birth?

When you are holding your baby skin-to-skin, your oxytocin levels increase, which reduces your blood pressure and lowers stress levels. Increased oxytocin also helps restore pre-pregnancy hormone levels, reducing the risk of postpartum depression.

How can I stimulate my baby's brain development?

Play ideas for encouraging newborn cognitive development

Talk to your baby often, hold your baby, and make eye contact. Read with your baby, recite nursery rhymes, or sing songs. Repeating the same song, rhyme or story is great for babies, because repetition is one of the ways they learn. Make faces with your baby.

What causes a baby's brain not to develop?

Some babies have anencephaly because of a change in their genes or chromosomes. Anencephaly might also be caused by a combination of genes and other factors, such as the things the mother comes in contact with in the environment or what the mother eats or drinks, or certain medicines she uses during pregnancy.

Why can't you hold a newborn on your period?

Since mom herself will be back on her period soon, there's no valid, medically-proven reason that someone's menstrual cycle would cause any harm to a newborn.

Should you hold your baby every time they cry?

A 2017 study confirms what many parents already instinctively know: You should pick up babies every time they cry. The research from the University of Notre Dame found that it was impossible to spoil an infant by holding or cuddling him, according to an article at

Is it OK to let a newborn cry for 5 minutes?

Allowing the baby to cry for 5-10 minutes alone in their bed is not going to cause any lasting harm.

What should you not do with a newborn?

Things Parents Should NOT Do With A Newborn
  1. Letting Him Sleep On His Tummy. Image source: iStock. ...
  2. Letting Anyone Kiss Your Newborn. ...
  3. Leaving Dirty Diapers On For Too Long. ...
  4. Over-do The Outfits. ...
  5. Letting Your Newborn Cry For Long. ...
  6. Leaving Your Baby Alone. ...
  7. Punishing Your Newborn. ...
  8. Giving Your Newborn Cow's Milk.

Can you damage baby's spine?

Infant spinal cord damage occurs when the spine suffers a blunt force trauma during birth, usually due to a medical mistake. The injury could come in the form of a contusion (a bruise) or a transection (a tear).

When should I stop holding my newborn to sleep?

So how do you know when it's time to stop allowing baby to fall asleep while you're holding them? “When babies start to intentionally smile at you—around 6 to 8 weeks—this is a sign that it's time to try to start having baby nap independently,” says Brown. At this stage, babies become more awake and social.

Do newborns like to be cuddled?

Unless a baby is cold, however, cuddling ought to be optional—something that happens when a caregiver has time, perhaps, and when the baby is bored or fussy. But that's not how things work. Babies want, even crave the experience of being held, and adults are generally thrilled to oblige.

What to do with a newborn who wants to be held all the time?

What to Do If Your Baby Wants to Be Held All the Time
  • 1.) Use Tools that Help You Multitask.
  • 2.) Use a Baby Carrier.
  • 3.) Swaddle Your Baby.
  • 4.) Get Moving.
  • 5.) Let Go of Expectations.
  • 6.) Team Up with Your Partner and Ask for Help.
  • 7.) Let Your Baby Get Used to Other People.
  • 8.) Consult with Your Baby's Pediatrician.

How hard should I pat my baby's back?

Pregnancy & Newborn Magazine's website says strong, steady taps work best. You can also introduce rubbing in circular motions from the lower back, working your way to the top, continuing to use a firm but gentle hand.

How do you burp a newborn?

Sit your baby on your lap supporting the chin and chest with one hand. Rub or pat the back with your other hand. Tip: Use repeated, gentle pats on your baby's back. Rest your baby faced down on your lap and gently rub or pat the back.

Why not to lift baby by arms?

Lifting baby by arms

This is not recommended and can be dangerous, as it can cause a condition known as nursemaid's elbow, or subluxation of the radial head. It happens when baby's ligaments get loose, slip, and then get trapped between the joints.

What happens if newborn's head falls back?

The worry here is that your baby may have a skull fracture or internal injury, like bleeding on the brain (intracranial hemorrhage). Without immediate treatment, bleeding can worsen and put pressure on the brain, causing a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Other warning signs include things like: vomiting.
Previous question
Is inflamed liver common?