Why Love Matters: How affection shapes a baby's brain

by Sue Gerhardt

Paperback, 2014



"Why Love Matters" explains why loving relationships are essential to brain development in the early years, and how these early interactions can have lasting consequences for future emotional and physical health. This second edition follows on from the success of the first, updating the scientific research, covering recent findings in genetics and the mind/body connection, and including a new chapter highlighting our growing understanding of the part also played by pregnancy in shaping a baby's future emotional and physcial well-being.

Sue Gerhardt focuses in particular on the wide-ranging effects of early stress on a baby's or toddler's developing nervous system When things go wrong with relationships in early life, the dependent child has to adapt; what we now know is that his or her brain adapts too. The brain's emotion and immune systems are particularly affected by early stress and can become less effective. This makes the child more vulnerable to a range of later difficulties such as depresssion, anti-social behaviour, addictions or anorexia, as well as physical illness.

"Why Love Matters" is an accessible, lively account of the latest findings in neuroscience, developmental psychology and neurobiology - research that matters to us all. It is an invaluable and hugely popular guide for parents and professional alike.

Dr Sue Gerhardt has been a psychoanalytic psychotherapist in private practice since 1997. She co-founded the Oxford Parent Infant Project (OXPIP), a pioneering charity that today provides psychoterapeutic help to hundreds of parents and babies in Oxfordshire and is now the prototype of many new 'PIPs' around the country. She is also the author of "The Selfish Society" (2010).


Routledge (2014), Edition: 2, 318 pages


Original language


Original publication date



0415870534 / 9780415870535



Physical description

318 p.; 5.08 inches


1 copy
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