Building Attachment

by: Abby Boerner

Attachment & Emotional Development

An attachment is a bay's bond to his or her main caregiver. Attachment develops during the first couple months of life. By age two it should be fully formed. If it is not formed fully by age two, the child may have difficulty with relationships later on in their life. A healthy attachment helps a baby develop trust, self-esteem, and social and emotional skills.

Building Attachment Through Touch

Touch helps build trust and affection between a baby and a caregiver. Infants need to be held and cuddled. Babies experience and respond to their environment is through touch. Holding, massaging, and cuddling the infant is a way to show love or affection to a child. Through touch, the baby learns that the caregiver will be there when needed.

Building Attachment Through Consistent Care

Caregivers need to try to be consistent in their care and responses toward an infant. Babies will have a difficult time trusting their caregivers if the schedule often changes. For example, if the caregiver is patient and loving at times and impatient and harsh at other times, the baby will have difficulty building trust. Babies develop trusting relationships when caregivers meet their needs.