There’s no doubt that catering to your baby’s needs is your top priority from the moment they arrive. But as the caregiver, you’ll need to balance those needs with your own requirements and responsibilities. Taking time out for your own sleep, work and other children are essential. In fact, studies show that a severe lack of sleep in adults can cause memory loss, depression and a decreased immune response. So it’s important for babies to learn to soothe on their own. For some, this is accomplished easily, while others may struggle.
In hospital settings where parental touch is not possible, doctors have found that babies respond favorably to massage and simulated touch. Babies who receive moderate pressure massages exhibit less fussing, crying and stress behavior. They also sleep and eat better, have higher levels of serotonin, a natural pain reducer, and benefit from better immune systems overall. Hospitals also use devices that apply gentle pressure to a baby’s body like that of their parents’ touch to promote similar physiological and psychological results.
Research has proven that touch increases your baby's ability to regulate stress and thus self soothe. New research suggests that touch from a person or an object can provide similar benefits.