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Tips to Avoid Separation Anxiety in Infants

Infant Boy BSeparation anxiety is difficult for everyone involved. The baby sobs, the parents feel guilty for leaving and the caregivers have the near-impossible task of calming the infant down. Thankfully, there are a few techniques to prevent separation anxiety.

  • Say ‘Goodbye’ and Go – One of the worst things you can do is to linger around for an extra five minutes with your infant. It gives your infant the feeling that the person he or she is staying with is not trustworthy. Then, if you’re lured back into the room, the infant might have an even worse reaction than the time before.
  •  Don’t Sneak Out – Although this may seem like the best thing to, it can damage your relationship with your child. You shouldn’t trick your child into thinking you’re still there when you’ve already made it into work. When the child realizes you’re not there, it can provoke a meltdown.
  • Put on a Happy Face – Your child needs to know that you feel good about leaving him or her with the caregiver. Even if you’re sad to leave your child, the child should believe that you’re confident as you head out the door.
  •  Start Early – Unless you can be with your baby at all times, it’s a good idea to familiarize him or her with other caregivers from as early as six months old. Practicing the separation is important and will also make going into preschool a bit easier. If you have a lot of family members willing to watch your baby, they could be good resources.

These tips are not guaranteed. Separation anxiety can happen to any child at any time, but there’s no harm in preparing your child for the future.