We have long known that a loving touch can soothe a stressed out child, but recent research found that hearing a mother's voice over the phone can have almost the same effect. A recent study found that after a stressful episode the feel good brain chemical oxytocin rose and stress hormone cortisol fell in almost equal amounts in both girls who were physically comforted by their mothers and girls who were comforted by their mothers over the phone. Nice to know that loving words can soothe almost as much as a hug. The girls involved in the study were all under 12 years of age and had yet to enter the volatile teenage years when mother-daughter relationships can become emotionally fraught. Next time you feel stressed, dial the phone to find comfort in a loving voice. If calling your mother is anxiety producing, skip that call and dial a friend. Who is on your emotional support speed dial list?