Temperament is how your baby reacts to situations and expresses emotions.
What is your baby like?
This guide to a baby’s early temperament gives you insights into their personality — to help you be the best parent.
This section has two main goals: To increase understanding of what temperament is, so parents can better interpret their own child’s behavior, and learn about their child’s needs; and to promote acceptance of the wide spectrum of temperaments found in humans.
Temperament refers to a person’s style of interacting with others. It determines how they react to situations — by crying or being upset when things change, also expresses and regulates emotions.
Characteristics of temperament include activity level, distractibility, adaptability, sensitivity, and quality of mood. Some researchers call temperament “basic emotions” — these are feelings or emotions that babies express that change with the circumstances. Your baby’s temperament can be seen from birth and is shaped by genetic predisposition as well as environmental factors such as parenting style and cultural expectations. Temperament has a powerful impact on development in every area: social, emotional, cognitive, language and motor skills (e.g., how they hold their head up).
How Babies Sense Their World
As your baby develops she will progress through four “sensitive periods” when different senses are developing rapidly: vision (first three months), hearing (three to six months), touch (six to twelve months), and global awareness (twelve to eighteen months). These sensitive periods are important times for parents to provide optimal stimulation in these areas. Of course, children will be stimulated by play with you and the world around them — but if possible, try to engage in activities that enhance the development of each sense during its sensitive period. For example, give your baby lots of opportunities for tummy time so that she develops a strong sense of touch.
Some babies are just naturally more active than others. They will immediately tell you when they are hungry, need a diaper change, or want to explore the world around them. They may cry when they are tired or hungry, but they always come back with a smile on their faces.
Babies who are more reserved in nature will still let you know when something is wrong. They will need less attention and often prefer it if you respond quickly to their needs. Tears are rare as long as they are fed, nurtured, and feel safe
These baby’s don’t have opinions about everything, they simply go with the flow. They do not carry strong feelings and emotions from one situation to the next. The adaptable baby is calm and even-tempered, in good moods or bad.
These babies can pick up on the subtle emotions of adults around them and carry those feelings with them for a while. For example, they might cry when you are upset because they are picking up on your feelings. They also tend to be more perceptive and will tell you what things look like, taste like, or feel li
You never quite know how these babies are going to react. Their extreme reactions cause parents to worry that something is wrong when really it’s just their temperament showing through! These babies may seem happy one moment but then become extremely angry without any apparent reason shortly after. There is no meaning to
Types of Temperament
Easy baby – very adaptable to life’s ups and downs
Difficult baby – doesn’t adjust well when things change (can be overwhelming)
Low activity level = calm, more relaxed child; needs less stimulation (aids in sleep)
High activity level= fast-paced, active child; needs a lot of stimulation
How quickly does your child settle into new situations? Is he/she unpredictable or is their mood consistently good?
Adaptable = usually OK with changes such as going to new places or being introduced to new people
Unadaptable = gets stressed when his environment or routine changes
How easily do they register sensations like touch, sight, or sound? Are they easily overstimulated or under-stimulated?
Sensitive = more likely to react strongly to new situations (might make negative associations)
Resistant = can be insensitive to surroundings (can ignore pain)
Characteristics of temperament:
Your child’s temperament will have a significant impact on their behavior. Things that you do that are calming for others may not work on them because their temperament just doesn’t let it happen.
It is said that your baby has about 50% of the same temperament as their father and 50% like their mother so personality is partially genetic but also developed from unique experiences as well. Consider how your child’s siblings behave with varying activities and see what works best with your baby
What is your baby’s temperament like?
How do they fit in with other family members?
Understanding his/her individual personality will help you better manage behavior.
It can be a help to observe how similar and different their siblings are and where their unique traits come from
Temperament also changes over time, as babies grow into toddlers, children, and even adults (e.g., from being impulsive to less reactive) *
If you have concerns about the way someone has been dealing with your child or treating him/her inappropriately and that person is not going to give the situation more thought (or if it’s just too uncomfortable), reconsider arrangements for them to care for your child
Babies with Easy Temperaments
Babies with easy temperaments tend to be happy babies who are content and don’t fuss or become upset easily. They are often described as being laid-back, calm, mellow, good-natured, or placid. If you see this in your baby in the first few weeks of life their temperament will likely continue to remain relaxed when they get older. When you look at emotional development, these babies typically cry less than others and are better able to cope with new experiences and environments. This makes them more adaptable to challenging situations throughout life such as entering a school where there can be a lot of change for them.
Difficult Temperament Babies
The temperament of a difficult baby includes one or more of the following characteristics:
A difficult baby is more likely to be irritable, cry frequently, or have trouble settling. They are often described as being fussy, hypersensitive, over-reactive, or intense. These babies may not come across as easygoing at first because they seem so prone to distress and upset; however, if you look at emotional development in these babies you can see that it’s not just a matter of them being manipulative for their own ends (it wouldn’t work anyway) – it’s that they are really struggling with big feelings and it takes time for them to learn how to regulate them. This means that even though difficult babies can be hard work, they still need lots of love and kindness from you.
So Why Are Some Babies Easy And Some Difficult?
It’s not easy to predict how a baby will turn out, nor even if the same baby will be mellow or fussy tomorrow! But many researchers believe that there is an innate tendency for babies to be more of one temperament than another. We also know that a baby’s temperament tends to develop through interaction with their environment – including influences like culture, family, and life experiences. What this means is that both you and your partner can play a big role in shaping your child’s personality because you have such close contact with them every day. It may mean changing some things about the way you parent (which we can help with) and you mustn’t feel guilty about doing this. It must be hard to believe at times, but research shows that most parents who have a difficult baby are actually very good parents – they just need more information on how to cope!
What Does My Baby’s Temperament Say About Them?
Babies with an easy temperament tend to be happy babies who are content and don’t fuss or become upset easily. They are often described as being laid-back, calm, mellow, good-natured, or placid. If you see this in your baby in the first few weeks of life their temperament will likely continue to remain relaxed when they get older. When you look at emotional development, these babies typically cry less than others and are better able to cope with new experiences and environments. This makes them more adaptable to challenging situations throughout life such as entering a school where there can be a lot of change for them.
A difficult baby is more likely to be irritable, cry frequently, or have trouble settling. They are often described as being fussy, hypersensitive, over-reactive, or intense. These babies may not come across as easygoing at first because they seem so prone to distress and upset; however, if you look at emotional development in these babies you can see that it’s not just a matter of them being manipulative for their own ends.
Slow to Warm-Up
A baby’s temperament is not absolute; it’s more like a continuum. So when you are trying to work out what type of baby you have, think of your baby as a whole – and if there is one part of their personality that stands out then this probably tells you the most about them. For example, a slow-to-warm-up can be quite different from an easy baby. An easy baby is likely to adapt well to any situation with little fuss while the slow-to-warm-up might have trouble settling in new situations or negotiating big changes like going in for surgery. These differences may seem subtle but they matter because how babies deal with stress plays an important role in how resilient they are when they meet challenges in life.
What Are The Benefits Of A Good Versus Challenging Temperament?
If you are getting a sense of what your baby’s temperament is like, here’s some good news about having an easy baby. Babies with this kind of temperament usually have better outcomes such as being better able to manage stressful situations and are therefore more resilient when they meet challenges – compared to babies who tend to get distressed easily. Why is it beneficial for babies to be resilient? Resilience means that your child has the capacity to bounce back from stress or difficulty – rather than becoming overwhelmed and unable to handle change. If you think about how many changes your baby is going through at the moment (such as being away from home, having lots of new experiences and people in their lives, and all the learning they are doing) you can appreciate that getting through this period successfully will help your baby to succeed in future. Having an easy baby who doesn’t stress out easily also means that you are more likely to have a good relationship with your child – it’s easier to enjoy each other when things are going smoothly! The challenge for parents is helping difficult babies because these children often fall behind later on due to the problems associated with being irritable or upset every day. And even if these babies become more resilient as they get older (which research shows are rare), the negative associations surrounding their early behavior mean that it may be harder for them to get along with others in later life.
How Can You Tell If Your Baby’s Temperament Will Remain Challenging Or Change?
The good news is that early signs of temperament are fairly predictive when it comes to long-term development (see this graph below). This means that if you see your baby being anxious at a young age, they are likely to stay like this for the rest of their lives and vice versa if they show early signs of an easygoing personality. The important thing to remember is that babies go through a phase of change between two and eight weeks when all babies tend to be more irritable because they aren’t used to being in the outside world yet. But after this period has passed, what’s left behind is a good indication of how your baby will develop.
How, Will, You Know What Your Baby’s Temperament Is?
A good quick measure is to look at infants when they are about two weeks old. At this age, babies tend to be more irritable because they aren’t used to being in the outside world yet. So if you are concerned that your baby has a difficult temperament it would be worth considering whether their behavior improves after this period and if it does then chances are that having an easy baby was just a temporary phase. However, if you find that your child never becomes easier as time goes by then don’t worry; some children can have a challenging temperament and can still be happy, successful, and well-liked!
What Is The Best Way To Cope With A Difficult Baby?
You may be feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of having a difficult child. However, the good news is that there are some simple ways you can help them become less difficult in their behavior. For example, You can help your baby to feel safe and secure by giving them lots of affection when they need it (this helps all children) and if your baby has difficulties calming down at night or when they wake up during the day then try some techniques which might include controlled crying – which means letting your baby cry for a short period of time before going back to check on them – or swaddle your baby tightly to help them feel secure. There is plenty more advice on dealing with difficult babies in the guide to a baby’s early temperament that you can download for free by going to www.babycalm.com
What Should You Do If Your Partner Has A Difficult Baby?
It is very common for one parent in the relationship to have an easy baby while the other partner has a child who is more challenging to manage and this can be very distressing if you don’t understand why it occurs! It isn’t your fault or due to any lack of effort on your part; this difference is simply down to which side of the family your baby got their temperament from (which means that there probably isn’t anything you can do about it!). There is a lot of advice on this topic in the guide to a baby temperament that you can download for free by going to www.babycalm.com
What Should You Do If Your Baby Is Difficult And You Want To Have Another?
Having difficult babies and wanting another child is very common but many women worry that if they have another child then it will be just like the first! This isn’t true as children are individuals who interact with their surroundings in different ways; so while your second baby may have a similar personality to their older sibling, they could still develop differently. It is certainly possible to have difficult babies from easy-going parents for example, so if you think it might happen to you then chances are that it will be a little different.
Temperament is your baby’s behavioral style which determines how they react to situations and expresses and regulates emotions. Characteristics of temperament include activity level, distractibility, adaptability, sensitivity, and quality of mood.
All parents wish they had an easy baby. Parents who have difficult babies often envy those who have calm ones. But research shows that having a child with a difficult temperament is actually not a bad thing! In fact, these children develop into teenagers who are better adjusted emotionally and socially than the other kids in their class. This doesn’t mean that every child with a challenging personality grows up to be happy and well-adjusted; it’s just that they are less likely to have emotional problems when they reach adolescence.
This explains why some children can be difficult all the way through childhood and others only have a challenging temperament during parts of their development. Children who are always challenging may have an anxious temperament, while those who become more easy-going as time goes by might grow up to be cheerful! So don’t worry if your child is difficult now; there’s no knowing whether these behaviors will continue or change throughout life! The good news is that there are ways you can help them to feel safe and secure: for example, You can help your baby to feel safe and secure by giving them lots of affection when they need it.
The temperaments of different babies vary, depending on their mood and response to stimulation. Try to understand your baby’s temperament, so that you can provide the care they need.
For example, a very sensitive baby may need more comforting while one who finds it easy to adapt will be content with less attention.