The bond between a baby has and their father is very unique and quite different from the bond the baby has with its mother. Your adorable little one, who has been developing in Mom’s womb, is naturally comforted by her voice, scent, and touch. Therefore, if you have moments of feeling excluded, just know you are not alone. Many dads experience these same emotions. The first step is to focus on what feels the most natural between you and your baby. We have put together a lit of tips and ideas to helps dads strengthen the connections their baby.
WHAT ARE THE BEST WAYS FOR DAD TO BOND WITH BABY?
Make time for skin to skin and cuddle time. Skin to skin contact is soothing for both you and your baby. Let your baby rest on your chest during moments of downtime.
Talk or sing a song. Talk or sing to your baby throughout the day.
Prioritize eye contact while doing these activities. This will create intimacy between you and your baby resulting in a stronger bond.
Engage in activities. Make funny faces, such as peek-a-boo, for baby. Be sure to schedule time for these activities so they become a part of your regular, daily routine.
Always be moving. Carry your baby in a carrier during different times of the day. Your baby will surely be overjoyed to join you as you go throughout your day completing tasks.
Help with baby tasks. Taking the night shift or helping complete everyday tasks allows Mom to get much needed rest. During these times, you will notice that the strongest bonding moments can happen when the world is asleep and you are alone with your little one
THE BENEFITS OF SKIN TO SKIN & CUDDLE TIME WITH DAD AND BABY
Any experts will emphasize the importance of skin-to-skin and cuddle time. While all types of cuddling with your baby are important, focusing on skin-to-skin contact time with your little one is typically the most soothing form of cuddling for both of you. Skin-to-skin contact is a multi-sensory experience that helps your baby to regulate their temperature, control breathing, avoid crying, and feel secure. Skin-to-skin contact is also known as kangaroo care. When you do skin-to-skin contact with your baby, your brain will naturally release hormones like oxytocin, prolactin, and endorphins. These hormones contain strong feelings of love and an intense desire to protect. As a result, this helps to strengthen the bond between you and your little one, while also decreasing your stress levels.
TIPS FOR HOW DAD CAN BE AS INVOLVED WITH BABY AS POSSIBLE WITH FREQUENT INTERACTION
Whether you are speaking, singing, or reading a book to your baby, make sure you are doing it frequently. Prioritize eye contact while doing these activities. This will create intimacy between you and your baby resulting in a stronger bond. Although changing diapers in the middle of the night might seem like a task, it is actually a great time to bond with your baby. During a diaper change, there is an opportunity for an exchange of eye contact and physical touch. Other interactions for bonding time include giving your baby a bath or feeding them a bottle. As an added bonus, taking the night shift allows Mom to get much-needed rest and recovery. During these times, you will notice that the strongest bonding moments can happen when the world is asleep and you are alone with your little one. The strongest bonds occur when you repeatedly respond to your baby’s needs with love and care. This allows your baby to feel safe and secure, resulting in a plethora of positive, lifelong benefits.
TIPS FOR DAD TO ENGAGE IN PLAYTIME, UTILIZE CARRIERS, & MIRRORS
By using a baby carrier, you can carry your baby around with you during anytime of the day. Even while completing everyday tasks, your baby will surely be overjoyed to join.
By copying your baby’s behaviors such as movements and vocalizations, you are working on the first step to communicating with your little one. This is one of the key ways to establish a long lasting bond with your baby.
Newborns thoroughly enjoy playtime and will recognize the difference between playtime with mom or dad. These exciting interactions during playtime help to build your bond.
HOW DADS CAN KEEP AN EYE ON YOUR LITTLE ONE
It is essential to keep an eye on your baby at all times for both their safety and the bonding process. You always want to make sure you have a reliable baby monitor.
Check out smart baby monitors, video baby monitors, or audio baby monitors, all of which are sure to help build the bond with your baby. Depending on which monitor you choose, there are many features to help you capture moments you might have otherwise missed.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BONDING
How long does it take for a dad to bond with a newborn baby?
Many dads entering parenthood expect an immediate bond with their newborns. However, recent studies show that the bond between a newborn baby and dad takes time. In recent studies, some fathers did not feel bonded to their newborn baby as long as 6 weeks to 2 months after birth. As your baby develops with giggles and babbles, you will begin to see an authentic two-way relationship begin to form. The average time it takes for a dad to form a bond with their baby is six months. The bond dads will experience with a baby at six months is radically different than the one experienced after birth.
How can I be a good dad for my newborn baby?
As with all things in life, good things take time to develop. Do not put unnecessary pressure on yourself to form a strong bond immediately after you child is born. This can have detrimental effects. By caring for your baby’s basic needs such as love and affection, both you and your baby are sure to be positively impacted. It is not uncommon dor dads to not feel bonded to their baby right after birth. Do not take this out on yourself as the process looks different for everyone. There are many reasons that fathers don’t feel bonded to their baby right after birth. It is not an uncommon thing, so do not take it out on yourself. This process looks different for every dad. Be sure to check out some Baby Essentials to help keep your baby cozy while you are not around.
Feeling bonded to your baby gives you the feeling of wanting to provide them with unconditional love, affection, and support, especially when your partner is busy with all of the other responsibilities of caring for your. baby.
How you choose to bond with your baby will be an experience that only you will be able to decide. It is a natural process that is guaranteed to be challenging in the beginning but should only get better over time. The most important thing to remember is that the bond WILL form between you and your baby over time. Just remember to be as involved as you can and to try out some of our tips for dad to bond with baby!
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We hope our guide helped answer any questions you had about bonding with your little one. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us and we will be happy to answer them!