Parenting

Will Massage help Your Baby Grow Better? - When to Start, How to Massage Tips

Arika Tiwari
0 to 1 years

Created by

Will Massage help Your Baby Grow Better When to Start How to Massage Tips

When my baby was born, her growth was completely dependent on my breast milk and her sleep time. I became a mother for the first time 2.6 years ago, and my baby's birth weight was just average and she looked lean; I was quite insecure, anxious and eager to know other factors that may influence her health. I took it up as a challenge and spoke to various people including elders, doctors, fellow parents, internet, parenting sites, indeed almost everything I could do. I found that apart from keeping the physical environment clean and neat around her, properly dressing her up, developing healthy eating habits, maintaining a peaceful environment – massaging her became a major factor for her growth.

 

Is It Good To Massage Babies?

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.

 

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

 

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

 

Benefits Of Massaging A Baby

Massaging in a proper way, at the proper time, and by using proper oil can really be beneficial for our child. Let me share some benefits of massaging a infant which has made me massage her till date:

  1. Feeling of security: The direct contact time that a mother spends while breastfeeding and massaging during initial few days of her child helps babies to feel secure and safe. Massaging a baby promotes a strong bond, helps them to cry less, helps regulate their breath, and keeps the baby warm
  2. Improves blood circulation: Massage helps to improve the blood circulation in your baby's body. At a young age, the flow of blood to extremities like hands and legs is relatively less, hence the more time the mother dedicates to massaging these parts, the better is the blood flow and hence baby's growth
  3. Improves digestion and bowel movements: The vagus nerve connects the brain with important parts of body, including the stomach. Massage stimulates these nerves, hence improving digestion and bowel movement, helping your baby to grow
  4. Soothes and relaxes the baby: How do you feel after a good massage? Relaxed, right? The same way, mild massage soothes your baby and makes them relaxed and less anxious. They feel loved and cared for
  5. Improves colic: A gentle massage can be helpful to release trapped gas and hence soothe a baby who has been colicky. Bending the babies knees upwards so that they touch the baby's abdomen can help expel gas and this can be done when massaging the baby
  6. Calm respond to stress and pain: Baby massage helps your baby respond more calmly to stress and pain. Regular massage makes babies less fussy and more comfortable in their environment
  7. Improves and regulates your baby's sleeping patterns: If given at the proper time, massage improves and regulates your baby's sleeping patterns by relaxing the tired muscles
  8. Brain activity for premature babies: Babies who are born prematurely respond to massages by developing a more stable brain activity at a normal level

 

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.

  1. 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
  2. Coconut oil hardly causes any allergies throughout year. For extra sensitive skin, massaging with branded baby lotion does not have any side effects.
  3. Almond oil and olive oil worked best for me during winter season
  4. 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
  5. 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
  6. 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!

  • 28
Comments()
Kindly Login or Register to post a comment.

| Sep 21, 2017

helpful blog. thnx

  • Report

| Aug 23, 2017

Kya nahlane ke bad massage Kar sakte hai?

  • Report

| Aug 19, 2017

hii all my baby is premature.. wo 7th month me hi hogai to kya me baby ki massage khud se or kese kru ...wo bhot nazuk or choti c hai

  • Report

| Aug 19, 2017

Helpful... Thanks and can anyone share how to give massage 2 my 9mths baby... is there any particular massages..

  • Report

| Aug 12, 2017

Hi Mala, it's our personal choice on how long we can massage but it's better if we atleast massage twice a day atleast till 2 years.

  • Report

| Aug 03, 2017

which oil can be used to my baby girl for getting fairy skin ?

  • Report

| Aug 01, 2017

hi all till how many months we can do massage for girls? my girls is 3 months old

  • Report

| Jul 31, 2017

Hi Charul, it is not suggested to give bath during night time during winters and monsoon. Bath should be given during night in summers that too subjected to conditions.

  • Report

| Jul 31, 2017

Hi Usha, start massaging from the third week. I would send you link on how to massage very soon.

  • Report

| 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.

  • Report

| Jul 29, 2017

my baby is 11 months old and can't sit or lay down straight.. so how to give them massage.. nowadays it's a very difficult task for me

  • Report

| Jul 27, 2017

Hi Arika, my baby is 1 week old and average weight. A little thin as well. From what age should I start the massage? also, from where can I learn the right techniques and way of massaging? pls suggest some videos or websites or steps. thank u.

  • Report

| Jul 26, 2017

thank u so much...

  • Report

| Jul 25, 2017

I use Himalaya baby oil to massage my baby 10 mins before bath in all seasons. I see good results on my baby skin and she has not got any rashes any time.

  • Report

| Jul 25, 2017

Thanks for the info ☺

  • Report

| Jul 25, 2017

Massage as long as you can. Minimum till 2 years.

  • Report

| Jul 25, 2017

awesome.. thank you.. untill wat age we should massage.. my lo is 5 months old

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

thank you for sharing the benefits of massage.

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

up to how many months we can do massage

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

well I use milk cream (malai) for massage it help my child's skin glow n shiny plus it is natural without any chemical suitable for all seasons.

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

till what age I have to do massage?

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

in rainy n winter season, can I bath my baby at night before bed with warm water? won't it affect his health by cough cold?

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

thanks for sharing ur experience... even m y daughter's weight was also average but now she is bit healthier than before...

  • Report

| 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?

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

Yes

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

qoqo

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

Hi Kanu, yes I used to . I used to massage her with coconut oil and then after sometime used to give her lukewarm bath during summers as well.

  • Report

| Jul 24, 2017

can we massage before sleeping in night in summer... as elder said it may sweaty... and cause lot of heat

  • Report
+ START A BLOG
Top Parenting Blogs
Loading
Heading

Some custom error

Heading

Some custom error