Your little bundle of joy has arrived. You were ready for the sweet cuddling of a newborn, content and never to fuss. Now your child has arrived. But, wait, where is that contented baby? In its wake, you have a fussy child that will not let you rest, let alone sleep. What can you do to turn your child into that cuddly, gurgling bundle that you were expecting?
The power of baby massage therapy is strong. Most babies thrive on touch. They are little bundles of nerves and they do not have the muscle control to move in a way to help soothe their own little bodies. This is where baby massage therapy comes in.
After baby's bath, try laying the baby on his or her tummy on a towel or soft blanket. Grab your baby lotion and slather it on, gently massaging your baby as you rub it in. Gently knead the baby's muscles: shoulders, arms, back, legs and feet. Turn your baby over and repeat the process. You can even work in some baby exercises such as gentle "bicycling" moves with baby's legs. Put your hands at baby's feet and let him or her push. Baby will use muscles and will make him or her stronger in the process.
Babies need input into all of their senses: touching, smelling, hearing, tasting, and seeing. During your massage therapy session, most of these senses are being used. The baby will be watching your face intensely. He or she will be listening to what you are saying. He or she will smell the lotion and probably trying to get his or her fist into the mouth.
While sharing this special time with your baby, do not forget to talk or sing to your baby. Babies are little sponges. Even if you think it is silly to talk to your baby as if he or she is on the same level as you, you will be surprised when your baby suddenly responds to your voice, or a certain phrase or familiar song you have been sharing. Never underestimate the intelligence of your child. They are always learning. This is the true beginning of your child's language skills.
After baby massage therapy, sit back and enjoy how relaxed your baby can be. Before long, your baby (and perhaps you!) will be fast asleep. A relaxed baby is a happy baby!
Please be aware that the articles on this site are written by mothers who are discussing their own experiences and their own opinions. They do not, and are not meant to, represent professional advice and should be read with that point firmly in mind.
Our children’s welfare is paramount; if you are ever in the slightest doubt about any aspect of caring for a child you are urged to seek qualified, specialist advice from a professional advisor.