Crying Babies and Quiet Babies - 2

Response to Interruption of Sucking Test (RIS Test) 1

Let the nipple of the suckling breast rest in the baby's mouth, and then withdraw it gently from its mouth. How would the baby react to it? First, the baby remains unmoved for a while, and then starts wiggling its hands and feet slowly.

This movement quickens more and more until it gives place to crying. The RIS Test is a method to quantify this response behavior by means of a "pacifier" and to evaluate the neuropsychological function of a newborn or an infant.

This test is to evaluate the intensity of corporal movements and crying behavior that appear within 30 to 135 seconds after the nipple has been withdrawn from the baby's mouth, and to record the specific time required for the said movements and crying behavior to manifest themselves.

Three parameters of the RIS Test carried out on newborns aged one month or less are intensity of body movements, intensity of crying behavior and time required for their manifestation, which are closely interrelated. Observation confirms that a baby who reacts more violently on the interruption of sucking by withdrawing the nipple manifests also stronger body movements and cries more violently.

The intensity of crying response and the future of a baby

What is the difference between babies whose response is stronger (i.e. babies that cry more quickly) and babies whose response is weaker (i.e. quiet babies)?
Immediately after the birth, a quiet baby hardly smiles. However, 3 months after the birth, the situation is reversed: this quiet baby grows into a smiling baby. Obviously, smiling at this stage is a response to the mother's cuddling, which is a response of a superior level related to emotion. Later, when this quiet baby grows up to enter a kindergarten, it would mostly turn out to be a young child who listens keenly with its eyes wide-open to stories told by the teacher and learns group plays and teacher's lessons accurately by heart.

On the other hand, a crying baby would probably grow into a child full of vitality, who might snatch a cookie easily from a child sitting near by.
May I say that, true to the maxim: "Genius displays itself even in childhood", the idiosyncrasy that hints out the future of a human displays itself in a newborn's cry.

1: RIS Test (Response to Interruption of Sucking Test):
A method to evaluate the time required for, as well as the intensity of the response that a suckling baby gives when the nipple is gently withdrawn from its mouth. This test method may be applied to analyze the character of an infant.

Kobayashi, Noboru (1981). "Yoku Naku Ko to Nakanai Ko-2" (written in Japanese). Tokyo: Child Research Net. Retrieved Oct 9, 2003, from the World Wide Web
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