Benefits of Infant Massage
Infant Massage has many benefits for both the infant as well as the caregiver. Some benefits may include:
Infant massage relaxes and soothes:
Not only will your baby feel relaxed so will you! Nurturing touch is a naturally rewarding way to relieve stress for both you and your baby. Touch has been shown to decrease levels of Cortisol (stress hormone) in our bodies. Cortisol is always present in our bloodstream, but high levels of this hormone can be found in our bodies during times of extreme stress.
Infant Massage Deepens Bonding:
Infant Massage provides you with essential one-on-one time that will enhance your family bonding, understanding and ability to nurture. During massage Oxytocin is released in both the giver and receiver’s body. Oxytocin is our feel good hormone, also known as the hormone of love. This hormone helps to provide us with loving, nurturing feelings which helps us to bond. Mothers experience and increased production of Oxytocin during labour and breastfeeding but now research shows that even close physical contact and touch stimulates Oxytocin production. Great news for all of the dads out there who didn’t give birth to their baby, you can still produce the same hormones through the use of loving touch.
Infant Massage Improves Communication:
Touch is our first form of communication. So it is always natural to assume that communicating through touch enhances your ability to understand your baby’s special needs and respond appropriately. Infant Massage increases your confidence and sensitivity to your baby’s unique cues and forms of communication. You cannot spoil a baby by picking them up when they cry. When babies receive attentive responses to their needs they grow to become healthier and more secure in adulthood.
Infant Massage Contributes to Development:
Stimulates growth and healthy development of your baby’s body, mind and spirit. Massaged babies gain healthy weight better than babies who do not receive massage. Additionally, nurturing touch helps to enhance the digestion process. The systems of the body are stimulated during massage which assists in the absorption of nutrients and elimination of what is not needed. For some babies infant massage has also been shown to be effective at reducing the symptoms associated with Colic.
Infant Massage Helps Baby to Sleep Better:
Not only does massage help your baby to release stress which builds daily from new experiences, it allows them to relax. During this special time both you and your baby have time to relax. Massaging your baby helps your little one to sleep deeper and for longer periods of time which can translate into you being able to sleep longer as well!
Through massage you will not only increase your loving, nurturing bonds with your baby, you will assist in their healthy and happy development.