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					    Infant Massage - Health Benefits
            and Techniques
Traditional medicine in ancient India also known as ayurvedic medicine
introduces the use of infant massage. Since then, it became popular in many
cultures such as Europe, Africa, Latin America and Asia. Like a typical
massage, babies may enjoy the same healthful benefits such as healthy
circulatory system, releasing emotional stress and others. Aside from its
healthy and physical benefits, parents and their child have the opportunity to
bond and share love with each other.

Furthermore, International Association of Infant Massage or IAIM said, doing
a regular baby massage helps in giving better sleep, promoting better
digestion, boost the immune system, and aids in producing a hormone called
oxytoxin. Oxytoxin is a hormone that is use as a pain reliever and gives a
calming effect on people. Keep in mind that you must use only light pressure
when massaging your babies and you also have to make sure that it is not too
light that might tickle your baby. When massaging the smallest areas, use
only your fingertips.

Make sure that your hands are clean before you begin the massage. Wash
your hands with safe and natural soap that contains non toxic formula that
gently cleans and moisturizes the skin. Choose an enclosed room where the
air is easily circulated and gently place your baby on a safe blanket or
mattress. Talk to the baby in a loving and comforting voice before you start
the massage.

Remember to use edible oil to get rid of friction. You can use olive oil or
sunflower oil in order to your hands run smoothly over the baby’s skin. Always
use non toxic oil because the baby might ingest it when he puts his hands to
his mouth. Avoid using oil that is nut based like peanut oil because it may
cause allergic reactions to baby’s sensitive skin. Remove your jewelry before
doing it and rub the baby in a way that your nails don’t scratch the skin.

A foot massage is very relaxing therefore start with the feet. Start it by giving
soft pressure on each toe, then the foot and back to the toes again. Massage
gently all the toes and apply circular movements at the heels. Giving a foot
massage can normally help reduce stomach pain for babies.

Then move to his legs. Massage each leg with your hands as you press his
thighs gently. Slightly bend the legs and knees pressing the thighs gently
against the body as you move to the belly. Make a circular way as you
massage the stomach. Keep in mind that the genitalia area is not included
from the massage. Caress the abdomen as you move your hands clockwise.
Don’t use much pressure on this part of the massage because it can cause
difficulties with his bowel movements.
Next is massaging his head. Touch his forehead gently followed by the
temples and the base of the cranium. Then next are the eyebrows and
eyelids, nose, cheeks, the area around the mouth and the ears and the
surrounding area.

Lastly is massaging his back. Turn the baby around and start to caress him
with large yet slow movements that include his neck, head, back and legs in
one direction. Use your fingertips with circular movements as you give him
soft strokes on his shoulders and back. Don’t massage the spinal cord, just
put your hands and let the baby feel the warm from your hands. Keep in mind
that the baby’s spine is more sensitive than adults.

Make infant massage an everyday treat for your baby. It is more ideal if you
do this after his or her bath. By doing so, it would help your baby relax and
sleep better.

Debbie Jones William is a consultant on child care and development who
promotes organic products for environment and baby safety.

Babyganics is the manufacturer of organic products for natural baby hygiene.
Made from 100% pure natural ingredients, these natural baby products are
the safest and the most recommended products to use by mothers.


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posted:12/31/2010
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