By Cori Young
Child development is of great concern to any young parent. A growing body of scientific evidence shows that the way babies are cared for by their mothers will determine not only their emotional development, but the biological development of the child's brain and central nervous system as well.
The nature of love, and how the capacity to love develops, has become the subject of scientific study over the last decade. And it has great implication upon child development.
New data altering our knowledge of child development is emerging from a multitude of disciplines including neurology, psychology, biology, ethology, anthropology and neurocardiology. Something scientific disciplines find in common when putting love under the microscope is that in addition to shaping the brains of infants, mother's love acts as a template for love itself and has far reaching effects on her child's development and ability to love throughout life.
To mothers holding their newborn babies it will come as little surprise that the 'decade of the brain' has led child development researchers to the wisdom of the mother's heart.
According to Alan Schore, assistant clinical professor in the department of psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences at UCLA School of Medicine, a major conclusion of the last decade of developmental neuroscience research is that the infant brain is designed to be developed by the environment it encounters.1 In other words, babies are born with a certain set of genetics, but they must be activated through child development - early experience and interaction.
Schore believes the most crucial child development component of these earliest interactions is the primary caregiver - the mother. "The child's first relationship, the one with the mother, acts as a template, as it permanently molds the individual's capacities to enter into all later emotional relationships." Others agree. The first months of an infant's life constitute what... [continues]
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