We all know how hard it is to leave your baby in the care of someone else. But there are some objective ways to gauge just how well your baby is doing — both in child care and at home. The following body signs are often good indicators of a thriving child.
- Eyes: Attentive and interested looks are a good sign that your baby is being stimulated and getting lots of loving, personal attention.
- Smiles: Babies who are well nourished and tenderly cared for will grin, smile, and light up for their special caregivers.
- Appetite: If he feels relaxed and comfortable and plays vigorously with crib or floor toys, your baby will nurse and eat with pleasure.
- Voice: Happy babies vocalize a lot. They squeal. They use a good deal of vowel and consonant combinations when they babble.
- Toy play: When infants feel comfortable and secure with their caregivers, they are ready to give their all in toy play.
- Muscle tone: Babies who are calm and happy in child care have good muscle tone.
- Regularity: Having regular bowel movements indicates that your baby is comfortable and secure.
- Sleep: If she feels comfortable, your infant can sleep deeply.
If you and your caregiver make a concerted effort to pay attention to your baby's body language — and to provide lots of support and caresses — he should thrive in child care. After all, given the right environment, babies are primed to be delighted with several loving adult play partners.
Keep Your Caregiver Posted
To keep things running smoothly, be sure to share the following information:
- Your baby's regular schedule.
- The special cues she uses to communicate that she's tired, hungry, uncomfortable, or in pain.
- If she is unusually cranky on a particular day.
- When she masters a new milestone or any other noteworthy change or accomplishment.