– The positive effects of cuddling on infants have long been known. It helps their brain development and strengthens their feelings of attachment. Mom’s contact is one of the greatest medicine for a newborn. But what about mom herself? Well, according to science, cuddling, skin-to-skin care (SSC) or Kangaroo Care (KC) is beneficial for both the baby and mother.
– In a 2014 study, SCC was described as keeping your unclothed newborn on your bare chest, with a blanket or towel covering the baby’s back. The World Health Organization recommends all healthy breastfeeding mothers in hospital settings, after having given birth, to provide at least one hour of SSC. The study explained that the hormone oxytocin increases significantly during skin-to-skin care, and “promotes maternal/newborn attachment, reduces maternal and newborn stress, and helps the newborn transition to postnatal life.”
– Another study published a few years ago on the same topic showed that when mothers breathe in the smell of their own newborns, it releases a reward-seeking response in their own brain.
Alan & Mom (ChildUp.com)