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Bonding at feeding time

You and your baby share a deep connection. When your baby cries, you have an urgent need to soothe her. When she’s calm, you are at peace. And when she’s alert, you are fascinated. Feeding times offer excellent opportunities to make this bond even stronger.

Bonding is important for a child’s development. It helps her learn how to form intimate relationships and feel a sense of security and self-esteem. Physically the bonding experience helps a baby grow and thrive. There are many wonderful ways to encourage bonding whether you feed from the breast or from the bottle.

Stay connected

Skin-to-skin contact while feeding nurtures the unique bond between you and your baby. It builds trust and reassures your baby that she’s safe and secure in your arms. Hold her close and talk to your baby as she feeds—the sound of your voice is consoling. Stroke her head, arms, and legs lightly. Gaze into her eyes—she enjoys looking back at you.

Nourishing the bond

Whether you breastfeed or bottle-feed, it’s important to hold your baby while you feed her. Holding your baby in a comfortable position helps ensure that feedings will be pleasant, relaxed experiences for both of you. When you hold your baby close and make eye contact as she feeds, the emotional bond between the two of you is enhanced.

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