You see lots of babies, tucked in their prams being pushed around the shopping centres wide eyed and what appears to be very interested in life rushing by.  Chances are they fail to fall asleep in their pram as there is just so much happening.  Later on comes the crying and the upset and frustrated parents soon follow.

What most people miss is the first clue – wide eyed.  Wide eyed is commonly interpreted as interested.  It is in fact over stimulated.  Over stimulated is when your baby is getting tired and rather than being in a place of low stimulation to help them unwind and drift off to sleep.  Their brain is in fact being overloaded with more stimulation.  The more overstimulated they become the longer it then takes their brain to ‘wind down’.

We live in a very stimulating world what between people rushing about, the tv constantly flicking every split second, the noise and the amount of signs plastered in our environment.  This problem not only affects babies, but children of all ages and even adults.  How long does it take you to wind down?

The solution? For a baby its easy to tackle, when you see the signs of tiredness, place a sunshade over their pram and cut down on the stimulation from outside.  Limit the amount of toys they have out on their shelves or cluttered around their room.

With children the same ideas are relevant although not always within a parents control.  At home you can certainly tame the clutter, put out select toys and books. Put the rest in the cupboard and swap them around.  Children focus better, have greater concentration and memory when there is order to their world and the clutter is minimized.  When reading to your children be sure to turn off the radio and tv to that they can attend and listen.  All this background noise is distracting and doesn’t let these skills develop fully.

A good example to think of is think about the last time you walked into a kindy  or classroom.  Were the walls plastered with so much art work, information sheets etc that there was no spare space?  I know I certainly have walked into kids rooms where I can’t think and wonder how our children go with being in this environment all day.  (Most often all the work on display is for the parents benefit so that they know what their child has actually been doing, there are much better ways to get this message to parents)  I have also seen centres where even the windows were covered with artwork.  Remember simple is better.   I have also seen classrooms where it is organized, with limited work on display that changes and the children certainly focus better and this aids in their learning process.  By making the walls clutter free we are actually impacting on their ability to learn.

As for adults, the same applies, the more clutter the less organized your brain is to think.  Why is it we all strive to have the great organized cupboard or house?  The sense of satisfaction and clarity we get seeing things organized, neat and tidy.  We have a totally different feeling when we walk into a room that is ordered compared to cluttered.  At work it is the same, we are more productive when are room is organized and the clutter contained.

17 Responses to Overstimulation and Babies – what you need to know!

  1. Very useful blog. Keep up the good work.

  2. Words cannot describe how good this article is. It is by far some of the best content on the Internet today. You are extremely talented.

  3. Thank You, enjoy and hope your baby settles better.

  4. please do, we add new content every week.

  5. One of our aims is to give, real factual information that actually works with babies and we love to educate parents so they are better informed when it comes to the huge task of parenting!

  6. I agree, it is very hard to find accurate and detailed information about babies and how they get overtired and then what happens. Thanks for your comments we hope to see you again soon on the website.

  7. It’s amazing isn’t it – when you get information and can see the signs in your baby and now you know what it means and how to help them.

  8. Thank you – we’ve spent a considerable amount of time working out the design and well I really enjoying writing to educate parents especially when it comes to babies as not much is written about the very early few months.

  9. taiffsalm says:

    this post is very usefull thx!

  10. Great – be sure to check back in and I’m sure you will find my book valuable if you have a baby in the 0-6 month age group.

  11. Lynn Dilullo says:

    I am not sure where you are getting your info, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for fantastic info I was looking for this info for my mission.


    • Thanks for your comments – my information is based on 20 years as a psychologist and the last 10 specifically working with parents and babies / children, much research, reading and learning. With the aim to wrap it all up neatly for parents!

  12. Omar Plaxco says:

    I really liked this article.

  13. Thanks, will try and sort this issue for you. Still trying to iron out a few things with the new website and great to get feedback. Thanks Babysmiles team.

  14. Can I simply say what a reduction to find somebody who actually knows what theyre talking about on the internet. You positively know learn how to deliver an issue to gentle and make it important. More people must learn this and perceive this facet of the story. I cant imagine youre no more common since you undoubtedly have the gift.

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