Baby massage is a beautiful bonding experience for both you and baby. Learn all about massage through touch and you'll feel your baby relax into a soft sleep afterwards. Baby massage is best done after a herbal bath where the relaxation has begun.
What you need:
- essential oil or moisturising balm
- absorbent change mat
- unscented moisturiser base
Remove any jewellery you have on to avoid any injuries.
Take your baby to a warm room of the house, free from any breeze.
Remove your baby's clothing. You can either leave the nappy on or take it off depending on whether you think it'll be easy to clean up any accidents.
Place oil or cream onto your hands and rub hands together to warm up.
Always let your child know what is going to happen next. Tell them you are going to rub their back or legs, and whatever your next move may be.
Using small circular motions with your fingertips only, circle your child's forehead and temple.
Move along to the brow and jawline if they are not fussing about you touching their face.
Always keep one hand in motion during the massage so there is no lapse in between strokes.
Move to their belly now, using clockwise strokes. Go around and down. This will help with constipation and wind pain should they be experiencing any.
Starting at the top of the leg, cup your baby's thigh and move down to the foot and toes. Always start the next stroke before the previous one is finished. Do both legs and feet.
Using the same action as the legs, move on to your baby's arms and fingers. Each arm should be massaged with the same downward cupping action.
Rolling baby over, start at the shoulders and pull your hands in towards the spine, but not on the spine, and rub down to their bottom.
- You can lay a face cloth over your baby's tummy while massaging their legs so they are always feeling secure.
- Never massage a baby's fontanelle (the soft spot on their heads).
- Avoid using strongly perfumed moisturiser as this may irritate baby's delicate skin.
- Safe oils to use on baby's skin include pure olive oil, grape seed oil or sweet almond oil.
- Testing the oil or moisturiser on a 1cm patch of skin on baby's leg or arm for 24 hours is a good way to ensure they aren't allergic to it.
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