11 incredible ways in which massage benefits your baby (and you)

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Science says that routine touch and massage by a parent or loving caregiver are critical to a baby’s growth, communication and learning.

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Baby massage is an important part of every mum's routine and it goes without saying that it has a very significance place in Indian households.

We have always been told that massage benefits the baby's bones and health, but one of the most essential part of baby massage is the mother's touch and the sensory stimulation that it brings along.

Regularly massaging your baby is a way to give him much more. Not only does it increase the bonding time of the mother and the baby, it also leads to sensory stimulation and boosts the overall health of the baby.

The magic of a mother's touch is one of most important experiences for your baby’s development. Science says that routine touch and massage by a parent or loving caregiver are critical to a baby’s growth, communication and learning.

Touch: Our First Language

Have you ever thought about the fact that touch is the first language of communication between a mother and a baby. A mother's gentle and loving touch can help small babies grow stronger and lowers their anxiety.

Infants who experience routine touch make 50 percent more eye contact with adults and are 3 times more likely to have an overall positive expression than infants who do not.

In many hospitals and birth centers, newborns are placed on the mother's chest or abdomen to give them as much skin-to-skin contact as possible. Close contact between you and your baby also helps calm your baby’s breathing (another reason for the post-bath cuddle) and brings you emotionally close—a process known as bonding or attachment.

The Incredible Benefits of Baby Massage

Massage is a wonderful way to help strengthen your bond with your baby. This is the key to a child’s development, as many researchers and clinicians feel that a positive maternal child bond helps form the basis for future relationships.

In addition to helping you and your baby bond, regular massage has the following health benefits for your baby:

  1. Soothe your baby and reduce his crying
  2. Aid digestion and help relieve colic, gas and constipation
  3. Increase daily weight gain
  4. Enhance your baby’s adjustment to nighttime sleep, and help him sleep more deeply
  5. Relieve nasal congestion and teething discomfort
  6. Help develop good muscle tone, coordination and suppleness
  7. Enhance body awareness
  8. Boost the immune system
  9. Improve skin texture
  10. Help calm and relax both you and your baby
  11. Boost your confidence in handling your baby

Your touch contributes to your baby’s first emotional bonds. This contact helps build a foundation for emotional and intellectual development later on in life.

So the next time you give your baby a massage after his bath, know this act of love means more to his development and can have a lasting positive impact on his well-being.

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 [Image courtesy: London school of massage]

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