Nothing Better: The Science of Cuddles
“I love nothing more than to have Edison sleep on my chest.” It was a simple Facebook status update that got a lot of “likes.” What is NOT to like about a newborn sleeping across your chest? Bliss.
As I read this new mama's status update, I was easily transported to the early months of my daughter's life when I lounged in a recliner snuggling with my little girl. At that moment, there was nothing I loved more. Having a newborn sleeping peacefully on you is pretty darn close to heaven.
The status update stuck with me and I thought there has to be more to it. What is this amazing feeling? Why does it occur?
As I guessed, there IS more to it. Snuggles with baby are not only one of parenthood's awesome rewards, cuddling with your little one is also good for them AND you.
Newborns are sometimes challenged to regulate their body temperature. Snuggling is a great way to help your newborn. Laying your little one on your chest might just be the answer for physical comfort and care for them.
Studies have also indicated that young infants have more breastfeeding success when snuggled up on their mama. With the breast easily accessible, it's easy to understand that even the sleepiest of new mamas can pick up on their little one's cues of wanting to nurse as they see their infant root or nuzzle up against their mama's neck or on their chest.
And, of course, snuggles support bonding between parent and child. Simply relaxing with your little one is a great way to support the building of this new relationship. A bonus for you: when that little one snuggles on you, your body naturally releases endorphins, which fuel positive energy and emotions.
Snuggling, it's scientifically good. All of this from a friend's Facebook status. I have smart friends.