A team of researchers from Japan’s Toho University conducted a study to compare the difference in the reaction of infants when they were hugged by a stranger and the impact of different intensity of hugs. The research was done by monitoring the heart rate of the newborn and putting pressure sensors on the hands of adult volunteers. The result was published in the journal Cell and were pleasantly surprising to the say the least.
It was found that the babies felt the most calm during a medium pressure hug when compared to just being held in the arms. However, before you go squeezing your baby, remember that the study also noted that the calming effects reduced with a tight hug. So, the sweet spot is somewhere between merely holding your tiny human to squeezing him in your arms and the ideal length of the hug is somewhere between 20 to 30 seconds.