The age-old tradition of massaging your babies possess significant advantages to both mother along with the baby. No wonders that baby massage has been part of generations and follows from mother to daughter. The birth of the baby is the beginning of a new bond and a relation that goes a long way. This bond strengthens with simple things like giving massage to your baby. Massage is a lovely way for you to express your love and care for your baby. Massage can soothe your baby and help her to sleep.
A baby massage is a great avenue to shower blessings, affection and fostering an emotional bond with your baby. The rhythmic, gentle coupled with soothing strokes encourage production of the hormone oxytocin in mothers and babies. It is the hormone which provides a warm feeling while curdling or breastfeeding your little one.
When you curdle a baby and keep them down, the same moment they start to cry? Pick them again and they will smile! Just imagine when a simple curdle can bring an element of joy, what a full body massage can do. Studies point to the fact that baby massage can reduce fussiness, crying and a baby sleeps peacefully. Some even go on to confer that it boasts immunity power of the kids to ward off germs. It in fact also helps your baby in gaining weight, aiding digestion, improving circulation, and easing teething pain. I personally feel that massage is a great way for you and your partner to bond with your baby, and you may find it relaxing, too!
A baby massage to your baby is a simple process and it is just going to take away 10 to 15 minutes from your life. Opt for a time when you are free and moreover when the baby is alert. In case if you end up massaging a fussy baby you will go on to over stimulate him and trust me he is going to be cranky. Ideally, it would be better to opt for a time when you change their diaper or a bath time ritual.
Key benefits of massage
1) Helps your child develop mentally, socially and physically
2) Stay relaxed and not get upset
3) Are less fussy and cries less
4) Babies sleep better
5) Helps in weight gain
6) Helps in digestion and colic pain
7) Improves blood circulation
8) Eases teething pain
The process of massaging a baby
Babies are in love with repetitions along with routine procedures. So if you massage the little one, in the same way, day in and day out they are going to enjoy it immensely. The process of massage needs to start with the feet and working towards the body ending with the head.
- Pour a few drops of oil or cream in your hand. Make it warm by rubbing between the palms
- Start with the legs and massage it gently on to the skin of the baby
- Move your way towards the legs. In a milking movement touch down the thighs to the toes
- The same process needs to be repeated on the arms or hands following on from the fingers to the shoulders
- The toe should be held between your thumb and pointed finger. Pull it in a gentle manner and be careful not to crack the knuckles as it will give them pain. This process needs to be repeated for each finger
- Adopt a strategy of circular movements as far as the tummy or chest of your baby is concerned. When such movements are encountered with a small pressure, things along the digestive tract are moved.
- The legs of the baby should be held below the knees and fold it upwards. The knees should be pushed towards the tummy in a gentle manner. The trapped gas will pass through
- The front of the baby should be finished with long strokes ranging from the chest leading to the thighs.
- The baby should be turned back to the tummy so as to massage her back. Avoid pressing the baby on the spinal cord as it is going to hurt her.
Is it necessary to massage the head of a baby?
Hold on! No massage is complete till you are done with a head massage. In case of some babies, they love someone touching their heads often. If your baby does not like their head being touched then do not insist on a head massage. Once your baby gets familiar with a massage routine, they would take a liking towards head massage as well.
In fact, for the first few weeks do not apply any form of pressure on the head of a baby. Gently apply the oil on the head of the baby and let it soak on its own. Once the head hardens, with circular movements of your fingers press
Also, Read- Why natural birth is worth the pain
Tips to keep in mind before massaging your baby?
First and foremost choose a place that is safe for a massage session of the baby. It should be comfortable also as you would be taking a lot of time to complete the process.
Do ensure that the room is comfortably warm and if the weather is on the hotter side, do not resort to giving your baby massage direct under a fan or an AC. The baby is not going to enjoy the massage as long as they are feeling cold. Keep in mind that it is an emotional bond between a mother and a baby, so keep disruptions to a bare minimum.
Best time to massage the baby
It would be ideal to pick a time when your baby is between feeds and content. This will help in ensuring that the baby isn’t too hungry or too full. It would be better that you massage when the baby is wide awake. Try to make a set sleeping pattern for your baby so that you know when she will be more comfortable in getting massage done. A massage before bedtime will help your baby to wind down after the stimulation of the day and become calm, ready for sleep.
To conclude, baby massage on all counts is a boon as it helps the little ones to sleep better fosters better bonding and improves the health of the baby.
Love Deeply. Give Freely. Laugh Often.