Mother/Infant Skin-to-Skin Touch Boosts Baby’s Brain Development and Function

As the world prioritizes social distancing due to COVID-19, new research shows that extended use of Kangaroo Care, a skin-to-skin, chest-to-chest method of caring for a baby, can positively benefit full-term infants and their mothers, which has important implications for post-partum depression. The study provides evidence that the physiology of mothers and their full-term infants is influenced by Kangaroo care: it increases oxytocin levels in mothers, and during infancy, can favorably influence both neurodevelopmental trajectories and infant neurobiological functioning.

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Older children’s brains respond differently to rewarding versus negative experiences later in the day

Older children respond more strongly to rewarding experiences and less strongly to negative experiences later in the day, which may lead to poor decision-making at night, according to research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

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Researchers Discover Method to Detect Motor-Related Brain Activity

Motor-related brain activity is of great interest to researchers looking for a better way to improve neurorehabilitation, and one factor to consider is the suppression of the specific rhythmic activity of neurons within the sensorimotor cortex of the brain. Studies indicate this feature suffers from variability when using traditional methods to explore it. In the journal Chaos, scientists in Russia are approaching the problem from a different angle to search for a more robust feature of brain activity associated with accomplishing motor tasks.

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