New British research shows that there is an ideal speed to caress a baby and calm it when it hurts. The ideal speed that brings the best analgesic effect is about three inches per second.
Research is essentially a scientific confirmation of what parents know from personal experience with their babies, especially when they are going to be subjected to some painful medical examination like taking blood.
Researchers at the Oxford and Liverpool universities, led by pediatric lecturer Rebecca Slater, who published the biology journal “Current Biology,” according to the BBC and Indepedent, invoking the EIA-MEP, recorded with the help of electroencephalography the brain activity in 32 babies.
Half of them, who cared for them with a soft brush, showed an average of 40% fewer neural prints of pain in their brains, compared to the rest of the half-moles they had not been pampered.
“The touch seems to have an analgesic effect, with no side effects,” said Dr. Slater, who said that “instinctively parents caress their babies at the ideal speed.”