How to Give an Infant Massage
Who knew giving a massage could be so fun? Some people laugh at the idea of giving babies massages. In fact, they are wonderful for parents and babies alike. It enhances bodily function, increases parental bonding, and decreases stress levels. Yes, babies do have stress. In fact, colicky babies have a lot of stress and anxiety. Massage is wonderful for them, especially. Knowing how to perform baby massage doesn’t take a masseuse or a rocket scientist. It simply takes love and time.
Lay your baby on her back. This will put her in the best position possible for you to massage. It also allows you to bond better because you can easily maintain eye contact. Babies love eye contact, especially with mommy and daddy.
Lightly stroke your baby’s face with your fingertips. Begin at the hairline and stroke downward. Move to the eyebrow area, start from the center and stroke outward.
Move down to the tummy and make gentle, clockwise circles with your hands. Moving your hands clockwise helps food and gas move through the digestive system. This is the direction food moves through the intestines.
Grab your baby’s thighs and gently squeeze. Move down slightly, squeeze again. Keep moving down until you have gently squeezed your baby’s entire leg. Start back up at the thighs and do it again. Complete this routine 5 times. Crawling and walking infants especially like this massage.
Grab one of your baby’s feet with one hand. With the other hand, press firmly, but gently into the sole of the foot with your thumb. Keep your thumb firmly in place for 3 seconds. Release, and do it again 2 more times. Once you are finished with one foot, move to the other.