According to a research study of Filipino men, if a father shares a bed or a room with his child, his testosterone (T) level drops while he is asleep. Researchers state that men who were less involved in parenting and that did not share their room or bed with children had higher levels of the hormone.
In addition, dads with a newborn baby show a decrease of approximately 30% in testosterone levels. So why does fatherhood lower T?
The study shows that a high level of T in males is linked to mating, libido and competing for a female and dominance in the world of males. When a man does not have to compete with other men, his T level will drop. He just changes his role from a mating partner into a parent.
In most cultures, women are those that are associated with nurture, protection of a child and parenting. When one is a father, he stops behaving like a mating partner and, since testosterone is the primary sex hormone, he has no need to compete with other men.
The study also links the hormone’s level to how new dads are responsive to their newborns. If a father nurtures his newborn child, it is very probable that he has a lower T in his body than fathers who do not answer to a crying baby’s calls. This implies that creating a bond with a child will lower the T, but a dad will become more family-oriented.
Besides, the primary sex hormone has an effect on behavior of men, and those that are more involved in their child’s care will show less aggressive behavior.
The Quality of Sleep
When a parent sleeps with his child, especially when the child is a newborn, night sleep may be disrupted many times, for instance, to feed the baby, to change diapers or just to check if a child is safe.
Some scientists have proven that there is a connection between a lack of quality sleep and a drastically decreased testosterone level. The less a man sleeps, the lower the hormone’s level is.
Although T is a sex hormone that is associated with masculinity, co-sleeping with a child should never be considered disadvantage. It can be comfortable for both father and a baby.
Certainly, co-sleeping with a child will affect T level, but it will have some positive effects; it will improve parenthood and create a bond between a child and a parent.
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