Policy Resource

The Basics of Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health: A Briefing Paper

Download Files Aug 2, 2017

Promoting the emotional health of infants and young children should be underscored as an essential ingredient for a bright future for all infants and young children.

During the infant and toddler years, there are many opportunities to promote emotional health, to prevent emotional disturbances from taking root, and to treat mental health problems before they can manifest into more severe problems later in life. Policymakers need to support a continuum of services delivered by trained professionals with a financing mechanism that covers the cost of services. Investing early in supporting the mental health of infants and young children will yield benefits later and will allow states to forgo much more costly interventions that all too often result when mental health challenges go unaddressed.