The senses of touch and olfaction in early mother–infant interaction

Hugill, Kevin (2015) The senses of touch and olfaction in early mother–infant interaction. Journal of Health Visiting, 3 (12). pp. 654-658. ISSN 2050-8719

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What happens between mothers and their infants has considerable developmental and functional significance. Mother–infant verbal and nonverbal communication is highly complex and notably reciprocal in nature. These exchanges are influenced by multiple factors and affect the formation of mother–infant ties and the co-regulation of emotions, physiology and motor behaviours. How the senses help to mediate these interactions and influence relationship quality is an important and diverse area of human biology and relationship study. This article will explore the contributions of two of the important nonverbal senses, touch and olfaction, on mother–infant interactions in the period shortly after birth.

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