Massage is Good for Babies Too! by Mark Sanchez of MassageTrainingPlus website.
As exciting as it may seem, having a newborn is certainly not a walk in the park. Dealing with erratic feeding schedules, disturbances in the sleeping pattern, and constant dealings with unexplained crying may sometimes just too much to be deal with. All of these spell stress for the parents, especially for the new ones. However, before you fuss and lose control, be informed that there is one modest way to totally relax your babies! Parents and soon-to-be-parents may delight now with the benefits that infant massage can bring.
Massage as a technique that utilizes different levels of touch and kinesthetic stimulation, can bring about advantages both for the mother and the babies, says several studies. Indeed, infant massage goes beyond from simply relaxing your babies and putting them to sleep. Through gentle and rhythmic strokes—tender manipulation of your baby’s head, face, chest, tummy, legs, and feet—a gentle rubdown will not only benefit your babies but will also promote parent-to-child attachment.
So, what are the other benefits of massage? According to a study conducted by the researchers from Warwick Medical School and the Institute of Education at the University of Warwick, parents can help promote good sleep quality among their infants by provisioning a tender massage. Basing on the data gathered among 598 subjects, infants who received massage therapy seemed more relaxed when compared to those who are in the control group. This relaxed state, according to the study, can be attributed to the lower levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, present in the intervention group.
Moreover, infant massage has also been known to promote the baby’s overall physical and psychosocial development. Physiologically speaking, massage can help babies with digestive difficulties. Experts recommend massage therapy for babies, who are experiencing colic, as it may help to remove spasms in the colon. Massage is also generally good in relieving elimination problems such as constipation and in expelling gas. In addition, gentle stimulation of your babies can also help to improve immune system, promote muscle development, ease nasal congestion and reduce teething pains. Aside from that, it will also improve the hormonal, respiration, circulation, and nervous system functions.
On the other hand, the advantages of massage surpass not only the physical aspect but also the psychosocial aspect as well. Massage in babies connotes a deeper meaning; it implies communication between the baby and its primary caregiver. Through sensory stimulation, the baby becomes more alert and receptive to the mother’s touch. In this manner, both the parents and the baby can engage in a reciprocal and gratifying interaction. Massage promotes bonding, making the baby feel secured and loved, and in return, the mother feels empowered knowing that she can respond readily to her baby’s cues thus making her feel confident about her parenting skills.
The benefits of massage can be credited to the fact that physical touch is the first type of communication an infant receives, and among the basic senses, touch is the most developed at birth. With a gentle rubdown, parent and child bonding is made easier. Remember, you are not the only one who needs a comforting massage, babies do, too!
Author: Mark Sanchez of MassageTrainingPlus.com