Your baby’s six sensory states
Published 22/04/2011 | 08:00
Light sleep: While in this light slepp stat your baby will teitch, smile and flutter her eyelashes. This is known as REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. It is believed that this is the period when babies lay down memories and reinforce the brain pathways needed for certain skills.
Deep sleep: After a period of light sleep, your baby sinks into a deeper sleep called non-REM sleep. This vital stage is the sleep state whereby the growth hormone is released in large quantities, which your body requires for growth and development.
Drowsy: This drowsy state is seen just before sleep or when your baby wakes.
Calm-alert: After being awake for a short period, if he has been fed and is comfortable, your baby will cross the threshold into a very responsive and content state. In this wakeful state your baby is focused and really enjoys interaction with you. This is the state in which your baby responds best to her world, learning the most from her experiences.
Active-alert: In this state your baby will kick and move her body excitedly and very vigorously. This state is not the optimal one for learning because your baby is receiving too much input from her busily moving muscles. In this state your child is in danger of sensory overload.
Crying: In this state your baby feels disorganised and overwhelmed. You will need to use sensory soothing strategies to help your baby regulate her state and calm down.