What to Do When Baby is Overstimulated

overstimulated babyIn the beginning, your baby’s brain grows very fast. It requires a lot of learning opportunities, but every so often you’ll find your baby will cry and you can’t figure out why. Your baby might be overstimulated. You see, her brain and nervous system are taking in lots of information, but she isn’t able to process it, so she becomes cranky and scared. Even everyday actions like feeding and contact can trigger it.

What is overstimulation?

Overstimulation is when your child is overwhelmed by his environment, including sensations, noises, and activity. His brain can’t process all the information coming in fast enough, so he becomes frightened and upset.

You’ve probably seen this behavior when a child is at a party and being passed around to all the adults, or when a child is playing in a room full of similar-aged children who are all yelling and banging their toys.

Overstimulation doesn’t always come on at once, either. It can happen after a long day. For example, if your child spends all day at preschool, then an afterschool lesson, playtime at home with the siblings can be too much.

What are the signs of overstimulation?

Overstimulated newborns will display the usual signs of fussiness and tiredness. They will also make cringing facial expressions and jerk their heads away from you in an attempt to reduce the amount of information coming into their brain. Their hands might ball into fists. You will also notice their arms and legs waving as if warding off sensations.

Children who can speak might suddenly become withdrawn and unwilling to cooperate with whatever activity is planned. He or she might refuse to attend the class or play with their friend, or suddenly dislike something you know he/she likes. You’ll also notice behavior problems crop up that you thought were taken care of, like shouting or refusing to share.

You need to balance active and quiet time.

It’s great that you want your baby to learn about the world and grow quickly, but you shouldn’t constantly dangle toys in your baby’s face or insist on scheduling activities all day. Children need predictable, regular quiet time in a familiar setting just like you or I. Let your baby play quietly when she wants. She’ll use this time to learn how to occupy and soothe herself. It may notlook like she’s learning, but she is.

How do you handle overstimulation?

If your baby is overwhelmed, remove her from that area. Take her to a quiet, dim room with no activity. If you’re out somewhere, place her in her carrier or stroller and cover it so she can’t see the outside world. Swaddling newborns can help reduce their physical sensations, as will placing them in a sling or holding them close to your body.

You can help overstimulated toddlers by reducing noise and motion in the room as well. Turn off the TV or radio and bring the child to a familiar place, like her bedroom. Determine if your child needs you close or needs you to walk away. Help her put her feelings into words so you can help her in the future. If you decide to stay near, engage in a peaceful, quiet activity like reading or simply cuddling.

Truthfully, there’s no right amount of stimulation. It depends on the child and the situation. You’ll have to use your baby as a guide and adjust the environment as you see fit. Let your child be the guide.

transition baby from swaddleGuest Blog by Stephanie Parker from Sleepingbaby.com, inventor of the Zipadee-Zip

The motto for Sleeping Baby, makers of the Zipadee-Zip, is: “Inspiring Dreams One Night at A time,” and that, in a nutshell, is how it all started…with one little dream that has since become the Parker family’s reality. When Brett and Stephanie Parker’s daughter, Charlotte, was born, the feeling that welled up inside of them was indescribable; they never realized until first looking into those baby blues of hers that they were even capable of that kind of love.

When it was time to transition baby from swaddling, the Parkers tried every sleep sack on the market and every swaddle weaning trick they could find for nearly two weeks and nothing worked to get baby Charlotte to fall and stay asleep.

Stephanie became determined to restore sleep and sanity to their household and set out to find a solution that would soothe Charlotte’s startle reflex and provide her the cozy womb-like environment she loved so much but still give her the freedom to roll over and wiggle around in her crib safely. Out of sheer desperation and exhaustion, the Zipadee-Zip was born. The first Zipadee-Zip(R) Stephanie put together on her little sewing machine worked like magic!

To date tens of thousands of Zipadee-Zips have been sold and all from word-of-mouth marketing. It is so rewarding for the Parkers to see other parents and babies getting the sleep they both need and deserve!

For more information, visit sleepingbaby.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

8 Playtime Ideas to Boost Baby’s Development

playtime that boosts developmentWe all want our children to be as smart as possible. Let’s face it, smarter people tend to (not always, but often) lead easier lives, perform a job that doesn’t tax the body, and even make more money. Who wouldn’t want that for their children? We can usher them in that direction by taking steps to improve their brain’s development earlier in life. Play time isn’t all fun and games – it’s full of learning! Here’s how you can help.

1. Encourage babbling.

When your baby speaks gibberish to you, he’s actually attempting to communicate. Don’t disregard him or speak baby talk back. Respond as if he said something meaningful and then pause for his part in the dialogue. You’ll encourage speech development this way.

2. Arrange messy play.

Set up a space and then let your baby experiment with messy play materials, like water, mud or sand. These textures give him a chance to interact with something unusual and unlike anything he’s experienced before.

3. Include other children.

Before a year old, kids aren’t really capable of playing with one another, but just playing nearby can improve their development. They’ll witness how the other baby behaves and how he/she is using toys. It’s a different perspective.

4. Start the day with activity.

Be as active as possible early in the day. Early activity sets a tone for the body. Your baby will be awake and inclined to take in as much as possible. A slow start can leave your baby sluggish and unwilling to play.

5. Avoid overstimulation.

During play time, you want to let your baby move from toy to toy at his own pace. Don’t bring too many toys into the play area. Too many options can be overwhelming and force little minds to shut down or become cranky.

6. Skip playtime when your baby needs something else.

Convincing your baby to enjoy play time while he’s hungry, wet, or crabby is futile. Even if you get him to push his truck or shake his rattle, his brain isn’t in the right mindset to gain much from it. Meet his needs first so he can focus on learning.

7. Create a passion for books.

Just because reading is a passive activity doesn’t mean books can’t be a part of play. Use books with large, colorful pictures of animals and people. Make silly voices and animal sounds to match the story. Be as entertaining as possible so your baby associates fun and silliness with reading, thus creating a lifelong enjoyment of it.

8. Play “mimic” games.

Games that require your baby to mimic your movements are excellent tools for development. Play games like patty-cake, peekaboo, this little piggy, etc. You can encourage movement by imitating the behavior once, then placing the toy in your baby’s hand and encouraging him to do the same. For example, show him how to shake a rattle by placing it in his grasp and shaking his wrist.

footed pajamas for fast diaper changesWritten by Lisa Youngelson, Owner of Zippyz

Like most new moms, Lisa had been up night after night changing her newborn son’s diaper. She was so exhausted she could barely function, let alone match up the tiny snaps on her baby’s pajamas.

Frustrated by endless mis-snapping and re-snapping, Lisa found zippered pajamas, and thought her problems had been solved. That night when she unzipped her son’s pajamas, he started to cry from the shock of cold air. Although less time consuming, Lisa hated that she had to expose her baby’s entire body with the zipper. She felt her baby’s comfort should come first and yearned for the perfect footed pajama, which was both soft and cozy for her baby and hassle-free for mommy.

One night while feeding her son she thought of “Zippyz.” Zippyz are patented footed baby pajamas for easy and fast diaper changes with 3 snaps on the chest and a zipper from foot to belly. Finally, a solution suitable for baby AND mommy! Plus Zippyz are a unique baby shower gift! Along with her best friend and business partner Erica, Lisa decided make the diaper changing world a better place for all new parents!

For more information, visit www.shopzippyz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.