Infant Mental Health Awareness Week 2022
Infant Mental Health Awareness Week takes place from 13 – 19 June 2022 as organised by The Parent-Infant Foundation to discuss the importance of babies’ mental health as well as some of the issues that affect it.
This years’ campaign theme ‘Understanding Early Trauma’ is which focuses attention on babies whose mental health is most at risk.
Across the Northern Trust area families have access to specialised tailored support from pregnancy until their children attend school, to help support child development and encourage a close special bond between baby and parent such as Breastfeeding support groups, Star Babies for first time parents, Baby and Me groups, Family Nurse Partnership, Virtual infant massage and adult mental health support.
By working with parents to develop positive, relationships with their babies, this can increase the likelihood that a child will have a happier, more stable start to life, and they’ll be less likely to experience behavioural and emotional problems in later childhood and as adults.
What is Infant Mental Health?
Infant mental health described the social and emotional wellbeing and development of children in the earliest years of life.
The first 1001 days are a period of rapid development; early experiences affect not only babies’ emotional wellbeing now but also influences how their bodies and brains develop.
As a parent or caregiver, giving babies a sense of security and belonging is an early sign of positive infant mental health. Loving, nurturing, responsive relationships provide young children with a sense of comfort, safety and confidence and lays a foundation for lifelong mental and physical health.
Good infant mental health promotes positive outcomes throughout a person’s life and influences how they parent their own children. Investing in infant mental health pays dividends for generations to come.
Across #IMHAW2022 our Health Visiting Team within the Northern Trust will hold a series of workshops where parents are welcome to join to learn more about Infant Mental Health. Our public health nursing teams will be talking to parents about everyday ways to nurture their relationship with their child. Interactions with your baby during everyday moments, support your baby’s social and emotional development.
Events Planned for Infant Mental Health Awareness Week 13 – 19 June 2022
|Location||Date of event||Venue||Event||Time|
|Coleraine||16/06/22||Lodge Health Centre||Importance of play – Gift packs & play idea’s shared||2-3:30pm|
|Cookstown||16/6/22||Gold Surestart Loy Buildings 18-24 Loy Street
Cookstown BT80 8PE
|Breastfeeding support group – Raising awareness Infant Mental Health – Chat and Learn, responding to baby & cooing together||10-12 noon|
|Magherafelt||17/6/22||Baptist Church Magherafelt ,6 Ballyronan Road
Magherafelt BT45 6BP
|Infant Baby Massage Group – Promoting Infant Mental Health , a conversation , promoting Tiny Happy People – talking with your baby right from the start||10-12 noon|
|Ballymoney||20/06/22||“Duck pond “ Riverside Park Ballymoney||Promoting infant mental health and wellbeing : Pram push .. (weather permitting)||11-12 noon|
- You play a crucial role in building your baby’s brain, so why not have fun with every day activities to share with your little one. Here’s a few tips:
- Read, talk, listen, and laugh. Everyday ways to help babies and toddlers learn can be easily added to your daily routine. Try talking, reading, singing and playing with your baby. Watch how they respond to you with love, laughter and chat.
- Babies love smiles, cuddles, clapping. Try singing with your baby, they won’t care whether you know the words.
- Getting to know your baby starts in the womb. Talk to your midwife about our getting Ready for Baby classes – Getting Ready For Baby Programme – Northern Health and Social Care Trust (hscni.net)
- Did you know that children whose parents talk to them frequently hear about 45 million words in the first four years? The more words children hear and understand, the more they can say, and the better their reading and vocabulary skills are likely to be.
- Encouraging your child’s play is one of the most important ways to nurture development and it begins on day 1.
More advice and information on local services visit http://www.northerntrust.hscni.net/services/health-visiting-service/
14th June 2022