Did you know hugging your child actually benefits his or her physical, emotional and mental health? So, make sure you hug your little one frequently. Here are six ways in which hugging can benefit your child:
Helps in brain development
A survey by the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio found that the more you hug a baby, the better their brains grow. “Making sure that preterm babies receive positive, supportive touch such as skin-to-skin care by parents is essential to help their brains respond to gentle touch in ways similar to those of babies who experienced an entire pregnancy inside their mother’s womb,” researcher Dr Nathalie Maitre was quoted as saying by a daily.
Helps your child grow
Parenting expert and author Sue Atkins mentions in an interview that when infants are deprived of physical contact, their bodies stop growing, even if they consume the required nutrients. Hugging, on the other hand, will enable better temperature control for babies and develop a bond.
Reduces your child’s stress
According to researchers from Carnegie Mellon University, a person who receives a hug after a conflict shows lesser decrease in positive emotions. The study also concluded that hugs help reduce bad mood and stress, eventually keeping one happy.
Boosts your child’s immune system
The same study also revealed that hugs can help fight infections and boost one’s immune system. “The apparent protective effect of hugs may be attributable to the physical contact itself or to hugging being a behavioral indicator of support and intimacy,” Sheldon Cohen, the one who led the study, said.
Helps you deal with your child’s tantrums
If your child is throwing tantrums, hugging will help him or her calm down, making them feel better. “When offering a hug or verbal reassurance to calm your child, you are not automatically reinforcing their behavior. You are actually helping them calm down, so that they can hear you better,” Dr Azine Graff, a clinical psychologist, wrote in an article.
Boosts your child’s confidence
Hugging your child reduces his or her fears. It also makes children feel loves and less lonely, and boosts their confidence, as said by Atkins.