Relationship The importance of attachment in the baby's first six...

The importance of attachment in the baby’s first six months


When the baby is born, his body and brain are nourished by all the affection that we can offer him. The most important aspects of his future life depend on this initial care, as we now know that contact is the best stimulus for the child’s neural development.

During the first six months of the child’s life, predispositions to the most fundamental questions of life are established: future diseases, the constitution of the nervous system, the initial level of anxiety and depression, sensitivity and response to pleasure, capacity loving and aggressive, and the future personality. For all this to develop in balance, two things are essential: loving and constant physical contact, attachment, and a learning process that allows the child to live their growth and progressive autonomy following their own rhythm.


All of us who are born healthy, without brain injuries, genetic or chromosomal pathologies, have the same very rich potential capital: one hundred billion neurons that make up our nervous or neurological system and that govern all of our psychosomatic functioning through the transmission of information between neurons. (The so-called synapses).

It is estimated that in the adult human brain there are between 100 and 500 trillion synaptic connections. However, in children they could reach up to 1,000 billion. Synapses allow the neurons of the central nervous system to constitute the very complex network of neural circuits that will determine all the potential capacities of the baby; its viability, its growth, its breathing, the development of its organs and systems, its motor skills, its capacity for manipulation, perception, hearing, vision, understanding and thought.

And, for this, a specific and different stimulation for each function is extremely important. If not, that potential is lost and it is difficult to recover. If during the first weeks and months the baby does not receive the necessary stimulation and does not go through the appropriate experiences, some of these connections will not be formed, since the fact that these channels are established or not depends on whether they have ever been activated: said Simply put, if we don’t use them, we lose them.

  • If early stimulation is not produced, the child will lose potential capacities in everything in which brain activity intervenes: his sensory-motor capacity, his capacity for learning and thinking.
  • The baby needs to be caressed, rocked, hugged, talked, sung, to develop his nervous system. By singing and talking to him, we stimulate his emotions and interest. Your body, your urine, your feces and your openings will be, together with external stimuli, your focus of interest and research.
  • Breastfeeding also facilitates early stimulation. For all this, the contact and continuous interaction that the mother normally exercises is so important for the baby.


Animals know instinctively. But the construction of culture, technological and scientific development, and symbolic language have annulled the instinctual in the human being. Women of primitive cultures retain certain instinctive habits (squatting vertical delivery, carrying the baby close to their body). The Western mother has paid for the progress with the loss of these faculties and must replace them through her preparation for childbirth and upbringing. Those involved in raising the baby should do the same.

If early stimulation is enough, if there is attachment, the child can live the learning process easily and naturally. The fundamental motor of learning is love and identification with a loved object. And for this, it is necessary to create a climate that favors it.

Already at birth, the baby, who until that moment has been part of his mother’s body, detects and expresses the moods, nervousness, depression or anguish of his mother. You perceive his aggressiveness and the tension and conflict of the environment that surrounds him, and this affects his base of anxiety or initial security. But not everything is at stake there; the baby continues to develop and its psychosomatic constitution will continue to form in relation to the social environment in which it grows.


The love of the mother and the role of the father are what will allow the baby to socialize, access symbolic language and structure its psyche. The maternal function, through its presence-absence, will feed the constitution circuit of the psyche: transformation of need into demand and the establishment of desire. The mother will separate from her child little by little, respecting the rhythm of the little one.

This process can be interfered with by an absent mother, who does not attend to the essentials; or by an omnipresent mother, who cannot be separated. This presence-absence rhythm forces the child to demand, to elaborate that absence through his games, allowing him to develop levels of manual, bodily and learning dexterity. And this requires preparation, dedication and, above all, love. Building the future is a project of such magnitude that we should be prepared for it from a young age. We must face this preparation with love, with faith, with energy and desire because our lives, ours and that of those around us, are all about it. It is the most important inheritance parents can leave: their early upbringing and education.


The child needs someone to fulfill each of these functions. If this early contact does not occur, the child is at risk, since the nerve endings are in the skin.

This is known by cats who stimulate the epidermis of their kittens with their tongues. We, naively, comment on how clean they are, when the function of this gesture is much more important, since it stimulates development and establishes the affective bond.

It was John Bowlby, an English psychoanalyst specialized in child development, who described, in the 1950s, the theory of bond, common to animals and humans. With his observations, Bowlby showed that without this initial bonding and stimulation, the hatchlings stop their development to the point of losing important faculties.

It is vital that parents are with the child in its first months of life, that they practice attachment, although current social and economic circumstances do not facilitate it, quite the opposite, since our priorities seem to have been upset.

Bowlby wrote: “While the energy that men and women dedicate to the production of material goods is quantified in all our economic indices, the energy that they dedicate in their own homes to produce happy, healthy and self-confident children does not count in any way. statistics”.

Following their proposals, the WHO European Office proclaimed that “children’s health must come first.” But very few governments do this. Our future as humanity depends on it.

MindFixes Staff
MindFixes is dedicated to promoting mental health, preventing mental disorders and advocating, educating, and serving all people with mental and substance use conditions. MindFixes is determined to persevere, learn, grow, love and laugh through our wellness journey and we invite all to join.


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