Babies Brains

Attachment and Brain Development

The primary need of children is to form secure attachments in their early years. Secure attachment is a loving, emotional relationship with at least one consistent and reliable caregiver. If this doesn’t take place the development of the brain will be affected, in particular the capacity for empathy and compassion towards others may be damaged.

Much work over the past few decades in the field of infant research, mental health and neurobiology have changed our understanding of the influences on infants and who they will become. We know that every experience, touch, and relationship in the early years shapes the person and becomes the map by which the adult will navigate the world. 

The quality of the relationships with our parents and caregivers, especially in the early years, are the key drivers that influence us for the rest of our lives, both in terms of our sense of ourselves and in our relationships with others. 

A baby who is blessed with sensitivity, attunement and responsiveness to their psychological needs is a baby who emerges as a healthy and happy adult.

To read more about attachment theory visit Centre for Attachment.

And for more on an infant’s brain development and the importance of secure, attached relationships go to the Brainwave Trust website.

“However we treat the child, the child will treat the world.” 

Pam Leo


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