Sometimes your baby needs a break. Of course she wants you to talk to her and kiss her and cuddle her and make her coo and giggle, but all of this wonderful sensory attention can result in an overload, better known as over-stimulation.
Everything is exciting to a baby, who is experiencing the world and all its wonders for the very first time; their senses are all receiving new information at such a rapid rate – being held too long (especially when they’re passed around a lot by relatives and/or friends), staying awake too long, too much activity (busy sights, loud sounds, pungent smells, being exposed to technology, etc.), and interruptions to her routine are the biggest culprits of over-stimulation. Your baby will let you know when she’s had enough, by:
• Turning her head away;
• Closing her eyes;
• Avoiding your gaze;
• Tensing up, or;
• Suddenly becoming fussy.
It’s up to us to read the signs and act accordingly by giving her some space, rescuing her from the situation, rocking her or letting her nap – it will all depend on the context; what is causing the over-stimulation. And if it’s you (babies are so irresistible kissable) that’s causing the sensory overload, don’t be offended; allowing your baby some time out is great practice for the years ahead…we all need a break from one another at some point, even the people we love the most!