Oxytocin helps breast-feeding moms bond with baby

Australian researchers reported this week that moms who breast-feed are nearly four times less likely to neglect their children, than those that don’t.

Dr. Lane Strathearn, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital, explains the role of Oxytocin in the process :

“Oxytocin is a critical hormone produced during breast-feeding that promotes and reinforces maternal behavior. Animal studies have shown that this hormone is critical for the initiation of maternal behaviors in animals. It may be that breast-feeding stimulates oxytocin production in the brain, helping to develop the attachment relationship of the mother and her baby. Or the factors that help shape the development of the oxytocin system in the brain may predispose to successful breast-feeding and nurturance of the baby.”

The possibilities of the artificial application of Oxytocin in helping to reduce child abuse are obvious.