As much as physical therapy and its benefits are concerned, a person’s touch is very therapeutic, especially in the context of a mother and child. Scientists have been studying the skin to skin therapeutic contact between a mother and a child, both in animals and humans. It has been shown recently that a mother in Australia was able to bring its baby back after two hours of being pronounced as dead by providing the baby with cuddles, loving hugs, and care. Since then, a lot of discussions are made about the effects of a mother’s touch to the baby.
Infants are naturally closer to their mothers even during pregnancy and after birth. The following are the effects of a mother’s touch and care to her baby:
1.Relief from the Postpartum Depression
It is said that up to 15% of women experience postpartum depression after giving birth to their child. This is characterized by mood swings, insomnia, and anxiety. However, once the child has been handed down to the mother and when the mother feels the skin contact with the child, it brings her relief and reduces the depressive symptoms effectively.
2.It enhances the physiological stability of the baby
When a mother touches the baby, there is a change in the baby’s physiology. the skin contact helps assist and balance the baby’s blood sugar levels which effectively reduces the risk of hypoglycemia.
3.It regulates the body temperature if the baby
The mother and the child share many things, especially during the gestation period. Even after birth, the infant will need the same warmth and care that it experienced during the mother’s pregnancy of him/her. The mother’s warmth will provide an optimum body temperature needed for the child for energy. Giving warmth to the child is very important to keep the baby relax.
4.It relaxes the baby
Babies naturally cry but if it cries often, this means that the baby has not received enough mother’s care and touch. This is because the baby will always need the warmth and kangaroo cuddle of the mother as they give them the feeling of security. So, when the baby cries next time, all it needs is a mother’s care.
5.It improves the immunity and overall health of the baby
The skin contact encourages the growth if the villi’s sizes in the baby’s gut and encourages the development of the vagal nerve. The whole process offers a big help in the development of the baby’s gut health.
Also, the baby is provided with the instincts to automatically learn to latch onto the mother’s bosom for milk. They know, by instinct, that they need to get nourishment from their mothers.
6. It provides a strong emotional connection between the two
Physical intimacy between a mother and a child effectively makes the two closer and develop emotional intimacy that a mother and child naturally have. While the baby’s skin contact brings relief to the mother, the mothers’ touch also provides security to the baby.