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Characteristics of Infancy
Infancy is the shortest of all Developmental period - Infancy begins with birth and ends when the infant in approximately two weeks old. This period is divided into two namely
Infancy is a time of radical adjustment - although the human life span legally begins at the moment of birth, birth is merely an interruption of the developmental pattern that started at the moment of conception. It is the graduation from an internal to external environment.
Infancy is a plateau in development - The rapid growth and development which took place during the prenatal period suddenly comes to a stop with birth. The halt in growth and development, characteristic of this plateau is due to the necessity for making radical adjustment to the postnatal environment. Once these adjustments have been made, infants resume their growth and development.
Infancy is a preview of later development. It is not possible to predict with even reasonable accuracy what the individual's future development will be on the basis of the development at birth.
Infancy is a hazardous period - physically it is hazardous because of the difficulties of making the necessary radical adjustment to the totally new and different environment. Psychologically infancy is hazardous because it is the time when the attitudes of significant people towards the infant are crystallized and change radically after the infant is born or can remain unchanged depending on conditions at birth and on how the parents adjust.
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