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Baby Massage

Baby massage is an excellent way to form a close bond with your baby, and it also helps to stimulate the hormone oxytocin which creates a warm loving feeling in both infant and parent.

What are the benefits of baby massage?

  • Baby massage helps to make your baby feel more secure. It gives a child confidence and a long term feeling of stability as they grow.
  • Massage assists in making baby more relaxed and sleeping can become less of a problem.
  • Stimulating the circulatory system is particularly good for babies with digestive, nervous, colic, teething and constipation problems.
  • During a baby massage session baby will become more aware of its body and will quickly learn how to co-ordinate his/her arms and legs to achieve flexible movement.
  • Mental health communities have become increasingly aware of the lifelong impact experiences in the first year of life can have on an individual. Baby massage and the closeness between parent and baby that this brings will undoubtedly affect the future mental health of an infant.

 

Women who suffer from post natal depression will often find that baby massage helps them with their depression. The close and loving contact during sessions gives a parent a better understanding of their child's needs and problems and their confidence grows.

When is the best time to give a baby massage?

Once again this is dependent upon your baby. If baby is experiencing pain then a gentle massage may help to alleviate his/her distress. During quiet moments during a busy day, some parents find it relaxing to sit and bond with their baby and create a peaceful and loving atmosphere. This is particularly useful at bedtime and can help baby to fall into a natural and relaxing sleep.

Remember, you are both embarking on a great adventure, where you and your child will slowly get to know each other. Loving and tender hands will increase the love you both have.  It should be carried out in calm and warm surroundings at a time when you are relaxed and not worrying about anything else.

Don't try massage before or just after a meal as baby will either be too full or too hungry. The best time is probably between meals when baby is awake but settled. Obviously a session after the evening bath will help baby to relax and  will ultimately be associated with bedtime in the child's mind.

Prepare the room for the massage making sure there are no distractions. Have oils, creams, towels and fresh clothes to hand so the whole session runs smoothly. Your local health clinic will advise you on the best way to massage your baby so seek their advice. You will also find plenty of information on the internet.

Skin complaints such as eczema need not be a problem as long as you use the correct oil or cream for baby's tender skin.

Take your time and enjoy these quiet and rewarding moments with your young one.

Written for Rock-a-Bye-Baby Gifts

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