We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.” -Virginia Satir
Hugs are important for emotional growth, as vitamins are important for physical growth.
Science has proven the many benefits of hugging our children and I myself can speak of how comforting and peaceful it is to receive a hug. As parents or caregivers of children, our life may be so busy juggling all the tasks that we forget to hug our children. However, it is important that we do not.
Hugging reduces stress and can boost self-esteem. Researchers from the University of North Carolina found that hugging increases the bonding hormone oxytocin and decreases the risk of heart disease. Researchers from the University of North Carolina found that hugging increases the bonding hormone oxytocin and decreases the risk of heart disease.Research has found that hugging increases the bonding hormone oxytocin and decreases the risk of heart disease. It can also provide security in a way that no language can.
Hugging our child helps us strengthen our bonding with our child. When a child is hugged they can feel a senseof acceptance and this helps them with their confidence.
When studying for my Bachelors degree- I remember learning about a psychologist Harry Harlow, who conducted a study with infant monkeys and found that even the monkey’s preferred to spend their time with a monkey which was covered in Lamb skin, as it was thought that this provided them with comfort and security. The study supported the idea that physical closeness was important in the absence of the mother.
An additional research study found differences in the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in children who lived with their parents and children who lived in orphanages. The hormone level was higher for children who lived in orphanages and this was assumed to have been due to them lacking physical closeness with a caregiver.
Hugging is understood by all languages and cultures- did you know that there is an international hugging day? Might sound silly but I didn’t think we needed instructions to hug.
Sometimes life gets so busy that we forget to hug our children,
In life there may be times that we don’t feel like being hugged or hugging. However, you would be surprised that after a long day at work hugging your child could ease some of the stress of your day, whilst providing your child with that additional comfort and security that they need.