The effect of nonnutritive sucking on movement in the human newborn


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Abstract

30 newborn human infants were observed on 4 occasions during the lying-in period to determine the behavioral consequences of nonnutritive sucking. On 2 of these occasions a bottle-nipple placed over E's finger was inserted in S's mouth for 30 sec.; on the other 2 occasions E stroked S's forehead lightly with a cloth for 30 sec. Determinations were made of S's movement and, for 20 Ss, of mouthing and crying. Within 5 sec. of nipple insertion S's movement dropped to a significantly lower level; within 25 sec. after the removal of the nipple S's movement had returned to baseline levels. Nipple insertion produced a significantly higher level of mouthing and a significantly lower level of crying. No significant effects of the forehead stimulation were found. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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