Babies Accept The Stress Of Their Mothers And Show Physiological Reactions

According to the newest researches babies not only accept the stress of their mothers but also show some convenient physiological changes.

For many years scientists make studies and researches in order to find the answer of the question related with the ways of the emotional transmission from one person to another. These researches showed that emotions can be “contagious” and that there is an emotional synchrony between the romantic partners. But nowadays scientists want to expand these researches with emphasis on the emotional synchrony between the mother and the child.

stress mother

Its Your Baby Stress?

Sara Waters, a postdoctoral fellow on the University in California, is leader of a study that explores this emotional synchrony between the mother and the child and which revelations are published in the journal “Psychological Science“. Sara says that their researches showed that babies accept and incarnate the physiological remnants from the stressful experiences of their mothers.

Wendy Berry Mendes is one of the authors of the study and according to her our
earliest lessons about the management with stress and strong negative emotions in everyday life happen in the relationship parent-child.

For this study the scientist recruited 69 mothers and their babies of 12-14 months. Scientists put cardiovascular sensors on the mothers and the babies and with their help they recorded the reactions from both of them. Further on, they separated the children from their mothers and they asked the mother to give a 5 minutes speech in front of two evaluators who asked them questions. Some of the mothers received positive signals from the evaluators including approval, smile, nodding and so on. Other group of mothers received negative signals like glumness, turning head, crossing arms and so on. The third group of mothers did not receive any feedback. After that the mothers and the children were united again. By doing this experiment scientist confirmed their expectations. Babies whose mothers received negative feedback showed significant enlargement of the heart beats related with the base line that they had few minutes before they were united with their mothers.


Sara’s study shows that even though your child cannot ask if you are stressed or not he/she accepts your physical reaction and feel your negative emotion.
In the end, scientists tell that beside this way of transmission of emotion there are other ways transmission like smell, the voice tension or the facial expressions. At this moment Waters and her colleagues examine the hypothesis that the touch plays important role in the “infection” with emotions.