CT-AIMH is piloting an Early Childhood Mental Health Endorsement® (ECMH-E®). The ECMH-E® is meant to provide a path to Endorsement® for professionals who are promoting and implementing infant and early childhood mental health principles in their work with or on...
CT-AIMH is excited to announce our new Membership database. You can now sign-up, and renew your membership through MyCT-AIMH. This system helps you keep track of your own membership. Annual membership runs from January-December of each year. If you sign up for...
What is Infant Mental Health?
Infant Mental Health concerns the relationships that infants and young children develop with their primary attachment figure, which may be a parent or other primary caregiver. Infant Mental Health, sometimes referred to as Infant Brain Health, has been defined as the developing capacity of the child from birth through age five to: experience, regulate, and express emotions; form close, secure interpersonal relationships; and explore his/her environment and learn–all within the context of family, community, and cultural expectations (Zero to Three Infant Mental Health Task Force Steering Committee, 2001).
Promoting, supporting and strengthening these early relationships in a culturally sensitive context is the work of professionals from many disciplines including health, human services, and education. When these earliest relationships are positive, responsive and predictable the stage is set for all future learning, growth, and development.
We have a shared stake to make sure babies develop sturdy brain architecture because this foundation supports a lifetime of learning and productive participation in society. A reliable caregiver who is responsive to a baby’s needs is the base for secure attachment, which allows an infant to explore and learn.
Toxic stress from broken caregiver-infant relationships can push a baby’s stress hormones into overdrive. When constantly present, these hormones disrupt brain and physical development. And babies can’t learn if their brains and bodies are working against them. The antidote to toxic stress? Affection and protection by a nurturing caregiver.
Secure attachment is a fundamental building block of social function. Children need relationships with sensitive caregivers to self-regulate, get along with others, solve problems, and be productive — the basis for civic and economic prosperity.
Who We Are
The Connecticut Association for Infant Mental Health (CT-AIMH) is a professional statewide non-profit organization that offers education and expertise in infant and early childhood mental health. We promote and hold a set of Competency Guidelines®, that when they are met, lead to an Endorsement in Culturally Sensitive, Relationship-Focused Practice Promoting Infant or Early Childhood Mental Health®.
CT-AIMH works to promote, support and strengthen nurturing, quality relationships for infants, young children and their caregivers, within the context of family, community and culture through education, advocacy, and professional development.
It is CT-AIMH’s hope that all infants and young children in Connecticut will experience nurturing, responsive care through strong relationships that ensure optimal social and emotional growth and development.
Mission Related Priorities
1. Increase the competency and capacity of the workforce serving infants and young children and their families.
2. Engage increasingly and visibly in public policy and advocacy.
3. Raise public awareness of the importance of promoting the mental health and wellness of the most vulnerable young children in Connecticut.
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