Accompanying Childhood from Gestation Onward

09 June, 2020
Accompanying childhood is a determining factor in the vital development of children. We'll take a closer look at the subject in the following article.
 

Every day, we’re becoming more and more aware of the importance of accompanying childhood and adolescence starting during gestation. The way in which we accompany children during their development and their transition into adulthood has consequences, either positive or negative.

Many symptoms, illnesses, and physical and mental disorders have their roots in specific factors that occurred during their childhood. In fact, many of the small difficulties that we spend our lives trying to cover up are the result of life experiences we had as children.

Today, many professionals have been working for years in order to raise awareness regarding perinatal and children’s health. Their efforts focus on information, formation, and prevention.

What does accompanying childhood entail in regard to prevention?

This approach starts with an idea based on numerous investigations. These investigations demonstrate the events that children experience from gestation until the end of adolescence significantly condition the development of their adult lives.

Accompanying Childhood from Gestation Onward

Children learn about the world based on the experiences they have over the course of their lives. Children, as dependent beings, need the company of adults during this period of life.

The type of accompaniment that adults provide will establish the foundation upon which children develop the way they perceive themselves, others, and the world. Children learn through the life experiences that the adults around them provide.

From this point of view, prevention and intervention during this serious are of crucial importance when it comes to facilitating positive childhoods. And these childhoods will establish healthy foundations for healthy adult lives.

What are the areas where prevention is necessary?

Accompanying childhood means practicing prevention, with the necessary intervention, starting at the time of conception. This accompaniment needs to continue during all of those critical moments that can produce situations that have important repercussions on babies, their mothers, their families, and their environment.

Intervention and prevention are indispensable in the following areas:

  • During pregnancy, it involves a family accompaniment that favors a state of calm and wellbeing in mothers. This has positive repercussions on the fetus and on the formation of a positive bond with the child.
  • Preparing for birth: This preparation should provide mothers with the information and tools they need to connect with their natural capacity to give birth without any intervention besides respectful accompaniment.
  • Respecting natural childbirth. The birthing experience has direct consequences on both mothers and babies on many levels. Many organizations, including “Birth is Ours” (El Parto es Nuestro), speak on the importance of respecting natural childbirth. And this includes the need to train health professionals in this regard.
  • Encouraging and normalizing maternal breastfeeding as a natural process. Breastfeeding has countless benefits, which include contributing to the bond between mother and child. Many breastfeeding groups and organizations work to encourage its normalization.
  • Accompanying childhood post-partum goes beyond the physiological postpartum period. It extends from the time a baby is born until he or she reaches 2 years of age, approximately. This is a critical moment for establishing the bases of healthy attachment between mother and baby. In this sense, support groups for mothers are of fundamental importance.
Accompanying Childhood from Gestation Onward

More areas that require intervention and prevention:

  • Guidance regarding childraising during childhood and adolescence. This involves family support groups and informative and formative workshops. It also involves areas for family gatherings that lend to the support of a group or tribe. And finally, it means offering spaces and playful activities for children that meet their own developmental needs, etc.
  • Encouraging the formation of educators in this perspective of prevention. That way, they can accompany children and families in a respectful way and in accordance with the moment of life they are in.
  • Carrying out the dissemination of the importance of this preventative approach in other social contexts as a means of social change and improvement.

Accompanying childhood from gestation onward: Conclusions

These interventions must promote the right environments and circumstances so that babies, children, their mothers, and their families find the support they need when crises arise. This encourages solutions to problems that are more satisfying, which has positive repercussions on the life experience of children.

In short, children with happy childhoods become healthy and well-adjusted adults. And a world in the hands of this class of adults will produce important and very necessary social changes.