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We’ve all been there, it’s been a long day, and you flop down on the sofa, your body feels heavy with the day – then a gentle touch from your partner or child and you feel lighter and calmer.
Massage is a powerful tool to help us relax and feel better, it can help us both physically, by taking away muscle tension and discomfort and emotionally by relieving stress and helping us unwind. And it’s no different for your baby.
As parents we’ve all had that moment, you need to go to the toilet or answer the door so you put your baby down and he cries and cries. Pick him up and as if by magic he’s happy again.
Being a baby is hard work, and especially in those first few months – It’s a new world, so different to their previous home, the womb. Its full of new smells, sounds, sights, textures – every day is different and full of new and exciting and sometimes scary experiences, but something as a simple touch from you, their parent, something they are so acutely familiar with and all is right in the world.
If just being close to your baby can sooth her, then consider how she could benefit from a full-body massage. Research has shown that massaging your baby has numerous benefits including;
- Helping your baby make that transition into this new and wonderful world
- Relieving stress which often leads to better sleep
- Teaching your baby how to play
- Stimulating their senses in a safe and comforting environment
- Regulating the digestive system which can reduce the discomfort of colic, wind and constipation and results in a happier less fussy baby and fewer tears.
- Stimulating the circulatory system
Giving your baby regular massages is not only good for his well-being but also yours. Positive touch between parent and child instigates the body to produce Oxytocin, also known as the ‘love hormone’ because it is released when people snuggle up or bond socially. This powerful hormone creates strong connections within the brain for both baby and parent, and as this connection is nurtured the parent will become more connected and aware of their baby’s feelings, it will also lead to recognise nonverbal cues more readily. Regularly massaging your baby will also give you more confidence and support that feeling of closeness between you both.
Giving your baby a massage is as simple as it is enjoyable. All you need is 10 to 15 minutes for the benefits to be felt and the magic to start. Often the best time to massage is a time when you’re relaxed and your baby is quiet but alert, so not when they are sleepy or hungry, (If you try to massage a fussy baby, it may overstimulate him and make him more unhappy).
Many parents find that straight after the bath routine is the ideal time to indulge in some baby massage time.
If you’d like to learn how to provide your baby with a relaxing massage contact firstname.lastname@example.org for the next available course.
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