Does your one-year-old baby has been recently smacking people in the face when they reach them? It can be a playful or funny act but it actually has a meaning. Saying “Don’t do that” won’t help when your baby slaps you. At this time, they are being naughty when they do that and might just do it again.
Here’s why a baby slaps or hit you in the face:
The answer can simply be because of sensory experience. Babies love to explore and are very keen to know their surroundings using their hands and mouths.
With this exploration, your baby can discover new tastes, textures, and shapes of anything they lay their hands on. This stage also indicates a normal and healthy development for your baby.
The same concept applies to hitting, patting, smacking, banging, and slapping.
These socially unacceptable actions allow your baby to know the world around them.
Plus, their little chubby hands are not yet well coordinated and controlled so they can’t be gentle.
Slapping sounds are fascinating
The sound of slapping someone may sound fascinating to babies. It is not different from listening to the noise of banging pots and pans or clapping hands or tapping the floor.
Reach your face
Smacking or hitting may also be explained as your baby’s wild attempt to reach your face, resulting in a smack or slap. It happens because of poor hand-eye coordination and muscle control.
Having fine motor skills may be acquired when your baby turns 2 years old, so you need to be patient with your little one at this stage.
Form of play and social interaction
On the other side, it may also signal for attention, whether for you to play or interact with them.
What to do when your baby slaps your face?
Taking care of one-year-old babies can be one of the most challenging times for parents. At this age, babies become more active as well as explore their mobility and sense.
At the same time, parents can’t fully communicate with their babies that they will really understand, making it even harder.
Hence, what discipline is appropriate if a baby doesn’t respond in the same way as an older child?
Given the developmental stage, your discipline strategies should not focus on consequences and choices like time out because they generally do not work with one-year-olds.
Instead, it is best to use effective strategies, including positive guidance, distraction and soothing when you encounter challenging behaviours, according to experts.