Updated: Jan 17
If you look into research on and around baby massage there is a whole wealth of research and knowledge into the many benefits of this practice; so many reasons why it is important to massage your baby. It is amazing to see just how many benefits there are from such a simple, easy and fun activity for parents to do with their babies. These benefits range from establishing and strengthening bonding and attachment to improved anatomical and physiological development.
To help summarize this wide range of benefits, I have split them into 4 main groups and created the A, B, C, D's of Baby Massage; Alleviation, Bonding, Comfort & Development. Below is an overview of each of these groups, to help provide further details of the amazing benefits of baby massage.
- Main physical benefits of helping to alleviate colic, wind and digestive issues as well as other issues such as teething and congestion from colds etc. The oil itself helps to provide nutrients to the skin as well, helping the body to get rid of toxins.
- Helps to empower parents, providing them with a range of skills for them to actively help their babies with these issues, resulting in them being able to soothe and calm their babies.
- The release of oxytocin which occurs in baby massage helps to alleviate stress and stress hormones from the body, this also aids with the next two groups of baby massage, bonding and comfort.
- Bonding with your baby is key for not only their emotional wellbeing but yours as well. Bonding is vital for babies to promote attachment and to develop social and emotional intelligence.
- The main aspects required for bonding are eye contact, touch, smell, sound of voice and the production of oxytocin.
- Baby massage provides all these key aspects and is an amazing activity to promote and secure your bond with your baby. While massaging you are close to baby, allowing baby to smell your unique scent, eye contact helps you to connect and comfort baby and also allows you to ensure they are enjoying the massage, talking to your baby allows them to know what you are doing and also provides them with extra comfort, to actually carry out the massage you have amazing skin to skin contact with your baby to perform the different strokes.
- All of these sensations and connections combine in baby massage to create a wonderful bonding experience with your baby, releasing oxytocin, endorphins and serotonin (known as love hormones) in both the baby and the parent. Studies show that regular baby massage promotes significantly higher wellbeing in both baby and mother.
- Massaging activates the para-sympathetic nervous system, which is also known as the rest and digest nervous system.
- When this system is stimulated and activated it causes the body to release oxytocin and other relaxing hormones which expel any stress hormones and associated symptoms of stress from the body, leaving you a deep feeling of comfort, relaxation and happiness.
- Lastly and definitely not least, baby massage can help to support your baby’s development. The act of massaging stimulates the blood circulation around the body promoting increased delivery of oxygen and nutrients to all of the body’s muscles, organs and cells, thus helping them to work more efficiently.
- Baby massage also stimulates the nervous system, helping and aiding the development of vital nerve connections between the body and the brain.
- The stimulation of different parts of the body increases the awareness of the body as a whole, aiding with co-ordination and body/self-awareness.
All of the key benefits to baby massage work and link together to create a wonderful experience, improving overall wellbeing for both parent and baby. Practicing baby massage is also an excellent way to become more attuned to your baby, helping with more responsive parenting and creating a solid base of connection to carry forward throughout your baby’s life. Continuing massage throughout your child’s life creates an opportunity for skin to skin contact and bonding, setting aside time for you and your child to connect, helping to continue the amazing bond first established in infanthood.
In summary, there are so many wonderful reasons why it is important to massage your baby.
My Happy Baby Massage course covers all these amazing benefits, includes routines for all areas of the body and teaches you skills to create a wonderful bonding practice that will last your baby's lifetime. Head to the Booking page of my website to book your place today and start your own wonderful bonding practice for you and your baby!
The Happy Baby Hive provides Baby Massage, Baby Yoga and Movers Yoga classes in the Hull & East Riding area, currently running in Swanland, Hull and Little Weighton. For more information on current and upcoming courses head to the booking page of my website; https://www.thehappybabyhive.com/booknow