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Local expert discusses the significance of protecting infant mental health



Indianapolis, Indiana – One local expert claims that safeguarding one’s mental health is essential for the growth and development of infants and toddlers as well as older children and adults.

Clinical psychologist Dr. Katie Herron serves as the temporary head of the Early Childhood Center at Indiana University Bloomington’s Indiana Institute on Disability and Community.

Herron works with families and young children, particularly babies while traveling throughout Indiana. Families frequently share with her their struggles and the unusual habits their infants are displaying, according to her.

The development of a child’s emotional and social skills up to the age of three is referred to as infant mental health.

“We’re not trying to diagnose a baby. What we’re trying to do is make sure that baby is surrounded by secure parents who have what they need in order to help that baby because we know that brains change constantly,” Herron said. “To be able to jump in now will be able to save a lot of trouble down the road.”

Poor sleep habits, eating issues, restlessness, discomfort, and terror are all signs of concern in newborns, according to Herron.

Parents in Indiana can receive assistance by contacting 211 or signing up for My Healthy Baby, a state program that links women with family support providers who can provide free advice and assistance. First Steps is an early intervention program designed to support the growth and development of newborns and toddlers to the fullest extent possible.