message therapy for good health

Tips For Giving Your Infant A Massage

Tips For Giving Your Infant A Massage. There are a few things you can keep in mind before, during and after infant massage to insure that you and the baby will enjoy the experience.

It is important to remember that massage is something that you do with your baby, not to your baby. Communication is an important part of the infant massage.

Make sure that you choose a time to start the massage that is good for both you and the baby. A hungry or tired baby may not be as receptive as a happy, well fed one.

You may not be as open to responding to your baby if you are feeling unwell, are super stressed or over tired. Infants who are under 5 months of age should not be massaged during bath time, as they will become over stimulated.

Do not "time" your massages. It is best to let baby tell you when hey have had enough or when they are really enjoying the time and the touch and wish for you to continue.

Begin each massage session with the legs. This is a less intrusive way to begin. Your strokes should be firm and long.

Light feather-like strokes can be irritating to babies Never massage a crying baby, except when the crying is due to colic or painful gas You will know that a baby desires you to stop the massage because they will be moving their arms "going in and out from their chest area" Do not place any pressure on the baby's diaphragm

Massaging babies in the abdominal area should be while he/she is lying down in front of you, massage from your left to your right i.e.: Babies right to left.  

Do not use olive oil for infant massage, it's texture is too thick and cannot be absorbed enough by the baby's skin. Use cold pressed vegetable, nut, seed or fruit oil that is pesticide free.

This type of oil is absorbed by the skin and will also provide additional benefits to the baby both during and after the massage. You do not need to wash off the oil afterwards, as it should be totally absorbed into the skin. 

Do not massage infants who have the following conditions:
  • Open or weeping wounds
  • Skin irritations that are infected Injuries or fractures
  • Bleeding
  • Do not massage over the unhealed naval of a newborn
  • Burns, including those from sunburn
  • Any undiagnosed lumps
  • Do not massage the abdomen of an infant who has just been fed
  • or who has hiccups

Many communities have infant/baby classes in which infant massage is taught to parents or caregivers. There are also hospital classes on infant massage that are given following birth while the mom and baby are still in the hospital.


Theraputic Massage Terms and Facts.

Massage can help to improve weakened muscles. We are effectively manipulating the muscles into working in a way that is unusual to them and this can strengthen the muscles.

Several good books have been written on the topic of infant massage. Infant Massage - Revised Edition: A Handbook for Loving Parents by Vimala Schneider Mcclure Baby Massage: A Practical Guide to Massage and Movement for Babies and Infants by Peter Walker Baby Massage: Soothing Strokes for Healthy Growth by Suzanne P. Reese and Bill Milne 

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