infant massage

Infant massage Benefits

Massage helps children relax and has been linked with better sleeping. Massage also eases growing pains and teething discomfort while supporting preterm infant development.

Infant massage classes at CHoR offer new parents, foster and adoptive parents an invaluable opportunity to build bonds with their infants and connect more closely with them.

Start with the tummy

Infant massage can be an incredible way to build relationships and help your baby relax, as well as alleviate discomfort such as colic. Furthermore, massage has been proven to aid healthy weight gain and sleep patterns in infants.

Michale Curtis, of Infant Massage USA, suggests starting by massaging oil between your hands and asking “can I give you a massage?”. This sets the stage and helps familiarise them with this cue as an indicator that massage sessions will soon begin.

Babies often respond well to tummy massage, as it helps them reduce milk reflux, increase frequency of bowl movement (which reduces bilirubin levels and can help with jaundice), release air and assist with constipation relief. Massage may also improve alertness and learning – this can be especially important for preemies and newborns.

Move on to the face

Infant massage is a beloved tradition across cultures. Newborns are commonly massaged while being dried to encourage them to take their first breaths. Infant massage has become a widespread trend in Western culture and serves as an invaluable way of bonding with your infant, stimulating development and encouraging better sleep patterns.

Parents/caregivers also gain from attending IMUSA classes; it releases oxytocin, improving mood and strengthening bonds between parent/caregiver and infant. Plus, classes are cue-based so each baby’s needs can be taken into consideration; in addition, small class sizes (or individual support) and structured once-a-week format give participants ample opportunity to learn.

Infant massage offers numerous health advantages for colicky babies, teething pain relief, constipation relief, strengthening muscles and tendons for increased range of motion to avoid atrophy and helping babies sleep more soundly. Furthermore, massage sessions make great bedtime rituals when combined with soothing music or soothing lullabies to create bedtime routines that soothe babies to sleep better.

Massage the legs and feet

Gentle massage of your baby’s legs and feet can help ease them from play time into soothing bonding time more smoothly. Take one leg by its ankle and use both hands in a C-shape (thumb down) around their upper thigh before gently massaging down towards their foot.

If your baby does not enjoy being massaged or shows signs of distress such as arching their back, it is important to stop. Remember the goal of massage therapy is not forcing children into relaxation by means of strokes; but rather encouraging children through encouragement rather than force.

Infant massage has been shown to strengthen parent-child bonds and increase caregivers’ abilities to recognize nonverbal cues, making life easier for new and foster/adoptive parents alike. Our IMUSA classes take place over 4-6 weeks so both the child and parent/caregiver have time to get used to this relaxing activity and experience its many advantages – often leading to better bedtime routines with increased positive interactions between mother and baby!

Finish with the head

Babies love being stroked, as this loving gesture is hardwired into their developing brains to promote emotional and neurological growth, promote bonding, mutual interaction and help reduce stress hormones.

Massage the head by supporting baby, then using flat fingers to make circular movements around his or her forehead and temples with one hand using one of several massage techniques such as compression massage or circular massage with both hands simultaneously using flat fingers – this stimulates visual, cognitive and motor development while helping prevent both flathead syndrome and torticollis.

Infant massage has long been practiced by some cultures and cultures across the world; its practice has since become more mainstream with the emergence of massage instructors and products for infant massage. Before engaging in any routine massage session, parents are advised to be aware of potential risks and ensure that it takes place in an environment without fragrance, preservatives or other agents that could damage infant skin.

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