Mums and caregivers have massaged their babies for hundreds of years. It is a wonderful way express your love for your baby and take time to bond with your little one. Massaging your baby stimulates the release of the hormone oxytocin; the feel good hormone in both you and your baby. Oxytocin is the hormone that gives you that lovely warm, loving feeling when you cuddle your baby.
Massage has numerous benefits for your baby including improving weight gain, aiding digestion, improving circulation and easing teething pain. Many studies have shown that massaging your baby can actually reduce crying and fussiness, help him sleep more peacefully, and alleviate constipation and colic. Some say that it even boosts a baby's ability to fight off germs. Massage is such a wonderful and natural way to bond with your baby.
There is nothing more wonderful than seeing the smiles on mums face and the giggles and lovely smiles from baby during a class.
Infant massage provides a special time whereby mum, dad or other caregiver has the time, calm and loving environment to spend magical moments with their little bundle of joy. Bonding is increased, communication pathways opened and all the senses stimulated. A truly wonderful experience for all.
"When you give your baby a massage, you're actually stimulating her central nervous system," explains Tiffany Field, PhD, director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine. "That sets off a chain reaction: It makes her brain produce more serotonin, a feel-good chemical, and less cortisol, a hormone that's secreted in response to stress. As a result, your baby's heart rate and breathing slow down, and she becomes more relaxed. " It has a direct impact on reducing levels of stress and the stress hormones (cortisol and norepinephrin).
Giving your baby regular massages is good for his emotional well-being too. "Affectionate touch and rhythmic movement are among the most powerful forms of communication between babies and their parents, so they're great ways for you to bond," says K. Mark Sossin, PhD, director of the Parent-Infant Research Nursery at Pace University, in New York City.
When a baby feels content, relaxed and safe sound sleep will follow. Baby massage not only helps to achieve this, but it also gives you the tools to establish a bed time routine.
The National Sleep Foundation and Jill Irving, health visitor, explain how establishing a bedtime routine at around 6-8 weeks old will help your baby to understand that it is time for sleep. Your routine can be whatever works for you, but spending just 10 minuets massaging your baby is not only a loving addition to your routine, but will have a direct and positive impact on the quality of their sleep, as outlined by Sleep Review, the journal for sleep specialists. This is in part de to the increasing levels of relaxing hormones (oxytocin and serotonin) that occurs during a massage.
WIND, COLIC & CONSTIPATION:
If your little bundle has already arrived, or if you have children already you will related to that feeling you get deep inside when their little face is screwed up in pain as gas and wind gets trapped and their are unable to relieve the pressure.
If there is one thing that the mums and dads on my course can't praise enough if the way in which massage and the specific colic routine you will learn has helped to relieve the symptoms of colic, gas and trapped wind.