First language

Language scientists are now beginning to understand that in many ways, touch is our first language.
 
Gentle and loving touch can help small babies grow stronger and feel less anxiety. In many hospitals and birth centres, newborns are placed on the mother's chest or abdomen to give them as much skin-to-skin contact as possible.
 
The touch between the mother and her baby brings them emotionally close – a process known as bonding or attachment. In fact, in one study, premature infants who were massaged while at the hospital gained more weight and were ready to go home with their parents earlier than preemies who were not massaged.