The happiest feeling is watching your tiny baby grow. Every new action, gesture and sound they make fill you with pride and make a memory. And they first year of the baby is full of so many of these. No wonder, new parents have so many pictures and videos of every small action of their baby and they can’t seem to stop talking about these to almost everyone they meet and converse with.
But did you know that every parent can boost their baby’s mental growth?
Following a balanced diet along with natural vitamin E sources during pregnancy and while breastfeeding, enriching the baby’s meal with brain boosting foods once they start weaning combined with some brain boosting exercises can help in baby’s mental development and enhance infant cognition. And this is exactly what Abbott #FeedIQ aims to spread amongst all new parents to help them understand more about their baby’s mental development.
Monitoring your baby’s development
Amongst all conversations and experiences that parents with babies share, discussing and comparing their activities and milestones are the most common topics. “When did he start responding to you? Does she recognize your touch? Has she started teething? Does he clap his hands?…..” and the conversations, comparison and experience sharing is endless.
While this mutual sharing of experiences really helps new parents as you feel that you are not alone and there are others going through the same feelings, emotions and insecurities, sometimes this might also lead to unnecessary worries too especially when milestones are not matching. So it is always better to be aware of these standard milestones to watch for.
Developing the 5 senses of a baby
Encouraging your baby to explore, understand himself and learn is so rewarding and these simple activities are proven to be very helpful in developing their senses.
Rattles are the first toys for most children. But what makes it more helpful is having rattles of different shapes, ones that make different sounds and of different textures. It is so much fun watching how they first learn to grip these rattles, then slowly start recognizing the different sounds they make and react to these sounds and eventually develop a liking and have favorites amongst them. These rattles help them with their grip, as well as sense of touch and sound too.
Reading and Story time
Story time was my favorite activity with my babies. Initially I would just make up really small stories and more than the story what I would stress on is the different sounds, expressions and gestures like clapping, opening the eyes wide, scared expressions and likewise. While the baby might not understand much initially, they start recognizing these expressions and reacting to them. Later I moved on to pop-up books, books with different textures, and even sounds. And this I think is one of the best ways to inculcate the reading habit at a very young age as well.
Messy play is another extremely fun activity that also helps the baby develop their senses. Water play, finger painting, tearing and gluing, playing in the sand, playing with playdough, or even different food grains – all this together is a lot of fun for the baby. And they learn and pick up so much. Textures, shapes as well as their hand and finger movements. This was something I initially was wary of trying being the neatness freak that I am, but looking at how good these were for my lil ones and how much they enjoyed, it was totally worth it.
Other fun activities like puzzles, stackable toys, blocks, rolling toys like balls or cars along with pretend play are all activities are not only fun but also take the kids away from devices and screens that they are so attracted to.
These activities combined with breastfeeding during the initial years provide the most building blocks to developing their senses and lead to proper mental development of your baby. What are some of your favourite activities to do with your baby?
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