Through the ages, infant massage has been practiced in cultures throughout the world. It is a wonderful, loving way you can nurture your baby from birth and continue to use as they grow into childhood.
Massage deepens the bond between parent (or caregiver) and child, it has immediate and lasting results, and gives fathers an opportunity to provide nurturing touch.
Benefits for Baby
- Emotionally nourishes the baby and helps them feel safe and loved.
- Helps strengthen and regulate the baby’s primary organ systems; respiratory, circulatory, nervous, musculature, and gastrointestinal.
- Reduces gas, colic and other digestive issues.
- Releases endorphins for pain management.
- Calms, relaxes, soothes and helps them sleep.
- Increases growth and strengthens immune system.
- Improves circulation of blood and lymph.
- Improves body awareness.
Benefits for Parents
- Deepens the bond between parent and child by enhancing communication and emotional ties.
- Gives parents a better understanding about their baby’s cues of responsiveness.
- Gives new parents confidence in holding the baby and providing healing, loving touch.
- Provides a means to develop quality interaction time.
- Helps parents relax and listen to their baby.
There have been many studies conducted on the positive effects of massage on newborns, particularly pre-term infants. A leader in the field of infant massage research is, The Touch Research Institute, in Florida states that in addition to the benefits listed above, mothers who have loving physical contact with their baby; watch less TV, talk on the phone less and develop a greater sense of communication with their child.
By Karen Zuckerman, LMT Owner of Wellbody in NYC
Karen is a mother, a massage therapist in private practice in NYC, and a Certified Infant Massage Instructor (CIMI) with the International Loving Touch Foundation.