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The Incredible Benefits Of Simply Holding Your Baby Close

Holding your baby close to you can be one of the most pleasurable sensations for both your baby and for yourself. But it also has many scientifically proven benefits.

Holding your baby, especially in those first newborn weeks, calms both you and your baby down, promotes bonding, promotes breastfeeding, lessens babies’ pain and much more.

And for the most vulnerable babies it can be a lifesaving experience:

Several studies have found that holding babies skin-to-skin, a technique sometimes called “kangaroo care,” can help them regulate and stabilize their body temperatures immediately after birth, a point in time when babies’ temperatures quickly drop. (A baby’s wet skin is said to lose up to 2 to 3 degrees very quickly via evaporation.) Immediate skin-to-skin contact helps keep babies warm, and some research even suggests that skin-to-skin may be at least on par with using an incubator for stabilizing preterm babies — who tend to struggle the most with thermal regulation — which may be particularly useful in areas of the world where access to those life-saving machines is limited. And Time recently reported on a startling long-term investigation, which found the benefits of kangaroo care may be long-lasting, finding that preemies who had a lot of physical contact with their caregivers had more predictable sleep patterns, steadier heart rates and even better stress management skills as school-age children, perhaps, because they calm down through physical contact when they are little, and thus learn what the regulating process is like.” Read more.

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