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How Can Babies Recognize Their Mothers?

Updated: Jun 8, 2023

How Babies Recognize Their Mothers

Many mothers are left intrigued as to how does their newborn baby recognize the mother from other family members around it?

Well, they surely can. Babies use 4 important sense to help them do so - their sense of hearing, touching, smelling and seeing.

Since so many senses are involved in newborns recognizing their mothers, it’s a combination of hearing their mothers’ voices, hearing and feeling their mothers’ heartbeats, the smell of their mothers’ bodies, and the sensation of being held and touched in a way that replicates what they sensed and experienced in the womb.

Do newborns know their mother at birth?

Yes, they do! Research shows that when babies are held skin-to-skin right after birth, there is a significant change in vital signs of the baby. Their breathing and heart beat becomes slower, calming them down after the strenuous task of coming out of their mother's body. This also helps them regulate their body temperatures.

It is also said that babies are able to develop a familiarity to their mother's voice while in utero. Right after birth, babies seem to be able to recognize their mother's voice and prefer it over others. Not only that, they also seem to have developed a recognition for the language spoken by the mother.

Moreover, babies also know their mother's heart beat and scent before birth. According to sources, fetuses are continually exposed to the unique smell and taste of their mothers’ amniotic fluid, which contributes to a baby’s highly developed sense of smell at birth.

When can a baby recognize their parent's face?

Despite having a limited fuzzy vision, newborns can view objects up to 12 inches far . This means that the faces they are able to learn and then recognize are from people who hold them the most. By the time they’re three months old, babies are “excellent” at distinguishing their mothers’ faces from those of strangers and show a strong preference for them.

If you are a mom-to-be worried that your baby won't recognize you, don't be. They’re already in the process of getting to know you and forming a bond.

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