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Healthy Attachment in Toddlers and Infants

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Healthy Attachment in Toddlers and Infants

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  • October 2011
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Healthy Attachment in Infants and Toddlers
Sheila Epper
ECE332: Child Development Course name and number
Allyson Randall
September 13, 2011

The most important time in a child’s life are the first three years when his emotional, social, physical, and cognitive developments are the most impacted and influenced. Displays of love and affection between an infant and parent develop a bond that creates an emotional attachment between the two and depending on the emotional security; some attachments are healthy, while others are not. Building a secure emotional attachment is important to the positive development of every infant and toddler because the impacts in infancy can be seen throughout the rest of his life. This paper will address the importance of creating those healthy bonds of attachment. Infants and toddlers who experience healthy attachment are more likely to “mildly protest their mother’s departure, seek interaction upon reunion, and are readily comforted by their mothers” (Rathus, 2011, pg. 116). A secure attachment creates confidence in the infant and toddler which allows him to feel safe. Separation from a parent may create a few moments of insecurity. However, a reunion with the parent is warmly welcomed with the child seeking attention from the parent, rather than ignoring the parent’s return. In comparison, unhealthy attachments such as avoidance attachment and resistant attachment display behaviors in infants that either shows no concern that a parent has left and returned or is extremely emotional when a parent leaves. In a childcare setting, one can see each of these types of separation and care givers who provide a nurturing environment, will help the child bond in the absence of the parent. Living in a military town, many families provide a look-a-like doll with dad or mom’s picture and recorded voice for their child. This comforting doll, reassures their child that they will soon return. A caregiver can reassure and build confidence by...