Never underestimate the power of a simple touch when it comes to building a bond with your new baby. In addition to those daily snuggles, developing a routine with your babe that includes regular baby massage sessions will offer even more opportunity for bonding, as well as a number of health benefits.
According to the International Association of Infant Massage Canada website, massaging your baby can help to improve sleep, stimulate circulation and relieve discomfort associated with gas, teething, colic, and other health issues. But it’s not just beneficial for your babe—you may find that spending time massaging your baby will help you to understand their cues, and build your confidence as a new parent.
Baby Massage: The Basics
Before you begin a regular massage session with your new baby, it’s advisable to take a class with a certified instructor. Not only will this help you to learn the proper techniques, but it can also increase your confidence, as you will know that the moves you are performing are safe and effective.
Ready to give it a try? Much like getting a massage at a spa, the first thing that you’ll want to do is create a quiet, soothing environment to help your babe feel relaxed. Whether you’re massaging your little one on a change table or a blanket spread out on the floor, make sure that you pick a spot where you can both be comfortable.
Soft, gentle strokes are key when massaging your baby—but not so soft that you spend more time tickling your little one than massaging him. You may also want to use some unscented lotion, such as AVEENO® Baby Daily Lotion, to help your hands glide more easily over baby’s delicate skin. And remember to let your baby be your guide—if he is fussy and not enjoying the experience, it’s best to stop and try again another time.
For a few simple massage techniques that you can try at home, download this free PDF guide to infant massage.
Looking for the perfect soundtrack for your massage time? Check out these 8 Soothing CDs.