Skin-to-skin contact critical for preemies

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Posted: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 9:44 am | Updated: 10:35 am, Tue Jan 7, 2014.

Children who received skin-to-skin contact as infants from their mothers show improved cognition skills and more mature functioning of their nervous system than children who only spent time in incubators.

In a study performed by researchers at Bar-Ilan University in Israel, 73 mothers were asked to give their children skin-to-skin contact using a technique called Kangaroo Care for one hour a day for two weeks. When compared to 73 children who only spent time in incubators, children who received the skin-to-skin contact displayed better cognitive skills, sleep, and responses to stress at every testing point from six months old to ten years old. Also, mothers who performed the Kangaroo Care reported having a deeper and more maternal relationship with their children than mothers who did not.

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