How Massage help Baby Grow Better? - Best Time and Oils to Massage, How to Massage Tips
Created by Arika Tiwari Updated on Aug 10, 2020
Giving your new born the very best care that you can, so they can develop and grow in the healthiest way – is a concern for all new mothers. Baby Massage is an extremely essential part of new born care, which benefits your baby immensely. It is also important to understand the benefits of baby massage, best time to massage, best way to to do massage to ensure healthy consistent growth and best massage oils to use.
How Good Is Baby Massaging ?
From my own experience and the wisdom of my elders, baby massage is a beautiful way to bond with your baby and shower her with love and care. It has been known to aid healthy weight gain, digestion, blood circulation, and makes the baby hungry and sleepy. Massage also helps soothe the baby, as once the baby is up and exploring the world around, she may get a bruise or a stretch here and there. Massage helps soothe any such discomfort. It is also believed that massage helps in easing teething pain. Moreover, babies feel relaxed after getting a massage, much like us adults, and tend to sleep better.
What Is The Best Time To Massage Your Baby?
Many people prefer massaging a baby before the bath and before bedtime, as the massage relaxes infant and she sleeps better. Some mothers prefer massaging the baby after a bath so as to retain the moisture in the skin. If you are using a light oil, you may opt for massaging your baby after the bath and retain the goodness. However, for heavier oils like mustard and coconut, it is best to run the baby a bath so the excess oil can be washed away. You can up the benefits by doing the massage in an area where there is ample early sunlight – this will provide Vitamin D to the child.
When Should I Massage My Baby?
Each baby is different, but the ideal times that suited me and baby were morning and nights. That implies that I used to massage my child twice a day. I used to massage my infant one hour before bath time in the morning and one hour before her sleeping time. During these hours babies are generally awake but settled; hence they would be interested in the massage, resulting in the active participation of both child and mother.
How Do I Massage My Baby?
Massaging a baby is much like a routine; the baby needs to know what is coming next. Below are some simple pointers to help you get started-
- Your hands should be clean and fingernails neatly trimmed
- At the right time, in between the feeds, when the baby is not hungry, place her on a mat and remove her clothes
- Make sure that the room being used is comfortably warm
- Take a little quantity of massage cream or oil in your hands and rub them between your palms
- Taking one baby leg at a time, start gently massaging upwards, lightly squeezing her calves and thighs
- Watch out your baby's cues for any signs of discomfort
- For the baby's chest, work in gentle strokes moving outwards, as if flattening a book
- Use outward strokes in small circles, drawing an oval below your baby's belly button. Always move clockwise to follow the natural course of digestion
- Massage the baby's back up and down and side to side. Most babies love getting their backs massaged
Benefits Of Massaging A Baby
Here is list of massaging benefits for your newborn, infants and toddlers as well...
1. Soothes and relaxes: The best way to calm a distressed infant is to give him/her a soothing massage. As you will see yourself, your newborn is quite active while lying on her back - the arms and legs are in a constant cycling motion. This eventually tires the newborn baby out and the result is that the your baby sleeps sound and easy
2. Fosters a bond: When you massage your baby, you are forging a great bond through touch as well as sound – it's natural to use soft, soothing, loving words along with the massage and this works like magic to make your newborn feel loved and secure
3. Cuts out colic and constipation: When you massage your infant's back you are giving her 'tummy time'. Tummy time, as your doctor must have told you, is important for the child's digestive system – it helps in relieving gas and also easing out constipation
4. Promotes healthy weight gain: It is believed that oil massage is an ideal way to ensure a healthy weight gain in babies. When you are massaging your baby, you are ensuring that all her body parts are being stimulated. This stimulation aids in better digestion and better digestion translates into healthy growth and weight gain
5. Boosts the mind: Experts believe that when you are giving an oil massage to your infant, there is a natural release of serotonin – a natural chemical in the brain which regulates moods. An increased serotonin production results in a happy child – and need we say, a happy kid means happy mommy!
6. Get the glow: Children have soft and supple skin. Why is that so? Well! you guessed it right – it is the result of an oil massage. Any oil containing vitamin E is beneficial to the skin. Most baby oils contain vitamin E which is very beneficial for the skin
7. Strengthens bones and muscles: Last but the most beneficial – an oil massage is the best thing that can happen for a growing child's bones and muscles. It increases the blood supply to the bones and muscles and also to all the vital organs; the result – the child becomes stronger day by day
How Do I Choose The Right Massaging Oil For My Child?
We all get worried when we see our little ones developing red rashes and our doctor says it's because of heat, hence we have to be most careful before using any oil. Your baby's skin is extremely sensitive and just any oil does not suit every child, hence the oils you choose may differ based on the sensitivity of your baby's skin, the climate of the place where you live, etc. I would like to share what worked well for me and my friends.
- Always apply oil on a small part of your baby's leg to start with, to check for any reaction; if there is no allergy, then you should continue to massage all the over body
- Coconut oil hardly causes any allergies throughout year. For extra sensitive skin, massaging with branded baby lotion does not have any side effects.
- Almond oil and olive oil worked best for me during winter season
- A lot of people swear by mustard oil – unless it is very hot where you live, it is one of the best natural oils to massage your baby with. However, some babies may not like the pungent smell of it
- Some people also suggest to use ghee. Though it is an excellent choice, care must be taken that it gets removed thoroughly and not block baby's skin pores
- As a general rule, choose an oil that is edible, unscented, and safe to digest. Avoid oils made form nuts and mineral oils
Massage helps your baby grow to be healthy and happy, and creates a stronger bond between you and them.
Did you find Arika's tried-tested tips on baby massage useful? How do you keep your little one healthy and happy? Do leave your comments…. We love hearing from you!
| Jul 24, 2017
Hi, my baby is 10 months old now, since he was 6 we were in mother-in-law's home, n she used to massage n give bath to baby, but however I felt my baby didn't get proper massage these 5 months, n he became strange to massage. can i again start giving him massage, as he is grown up he became crazy n active?
| Jul 31, 2017
Hi Akansha, when babies plays a lot and become tired, they want to relax, at the time, u can fix a time when you both can enjoy massage time. Gentle massage over legs, stomach and hands will actually make them feel relaxed. Play light music during that time or sing song so that she is stable for some time.