There are many benefits to giving your baby a massage, and it can be such a wonderful bonding experience for both mum and baby. To help you get started, this is how to massage your baby – and why you should!
One of the best benefits of giving your baby a massage is that it offers such a wonderful bonding time between baby and mum. Dads can even use massage as a way to feel more connected to their new baby.
It helps to build trust and communication, and the calming touch from a parent will show your baby that they are loved and cared for.
Massages can also help to relax your baby, which could even lead to improving their sleep.
There are health benefits with baby massage as well, as the massage can help to stimulate the digestive and circulatory system. This could help ease the following:
When To Start With Baby Massage
It is a good idea to introduce touch as soon as your baby is born. This is done through skin on skin contact, where mum or dad places their baby on their chest.
After this, you can start massaging your newborn when they are a few weeks old. Be sure to check he or she is in the right mood, calm, alert, and content.
Do not start to massage your baby if they turn their head away or if they stiffen their arms, and wait for at least 45 minutes after feeding.
How To Massage Your Baby
Here are some quick tips and techniques which will help you give your little one the best massage possible.
A cozy atmosphere – It is important to give your baby a massage in a warm and quiet environment. Make sure you are both in a comfortable place. Lay them on their back so they can make eye contact with you. A bed or a changing table is a good massaging area.
Start slowly – Start with a gentle touch, beginning at their head, moving slowly down to their feet. The massage should last as long as you and your baby are relaxed.
Repeat the process – If your little one is enjoying the massage, you can repeat the same rubbing motions again, starting from the top down towards their feet.
Communicate – Make an effort to communicate with your baby during the massage. Speak their name and lull them into relaxing and calming down. You can also try to tell them a story or sing a nursery rhyme to them as you massage their body.
Oil – You do not have to use oil for the massage, as some parents find it too messy, but it might help to eliminate friction from the skin. Make sure to use an odourless, baby-safe oil. Test the oil by placing a small amount on your baby’s skin, and wait to see if their skin reacts to the oil.