A 10% bigger brain from hugs? Read this report to smile.
“For years studies have underscored the importance of an early, nurturing environment for good, healthy outcomes for children,” said lead author Joan Luby. “But most of those studies have looked at psychosocial factors or school performance. This study, to my knowledge, is the first that actually shows an anatomical change in the brain, which really provides validation for the very large body of early childhood development literature that had been highlighting the importance of early parenting and nurturing. Having a hippocampus that’s almost 10 percent larger just provides concrete evidence of nurturing’s powerful effect.”
Study authors hope that educators use the information to help parents work with their children.”I think the public health implications suggest that we should pay more attention to parents’ nurturing, and we should do what we can as a society to foster these skills because clearly nurturing has a very, very big impact on later development,” Luby said.