Massage Therapy

Touch is proven to give lots of benefits not only to adults but to babies alike. I recently bought a baby oil and it comes with a touch therapy guide. I tried to follow the simple steps and Gabe seemed to like the massage. He kept smiling while I massage him and he slept soundly after that.
Some of the benefits of touch therapy are:

  • It is the most intimate and loving way to bond with your baby in a way unmatched by any other type of interaction. Massage can help her become more affectionate, confident and well-adjusted as she grows up.
  • It is clinically proven to help your baby develop a stronger immune system which helps her fight against diseases. It helps stimulate baby's circulatory, respiratory and digestive systems.
  • It helps to strengthen your baby's limbs and improves coordination, motor skills and muscle tone.
  • It teaches your baby to relax as infant-stress lowers her immune system and slows down your baby's physical and mental development.
Massage Technique #1: Smile
It's a facial massage that helps relieve baby's tension from sucking, crying and teething.
  • With your thumbs, make a smile first on baby's upper lip then the lower lip.
  • Gently press flats of fingers across forehead and make circular strokes.
  • Continue over the temples, the edges of the jaw, behind ears and the rest of the scalp.
Massage Tehnique #2: Butterfly
It helps to tone baby's lungs and heart to make baby stronger.
  • Put both your hands at baby's sides at the bottom of the rib cage.
  • Then place your right hand over her shoulders and move down diagonally across chest.
  • Do the same with your left hand over baby's right shoulder and repeat several times.
Massage Technique #3: Sun and Moon
It helps tone baby's internal system and relieves her from constipation.
  • Do an inverted half-moon with your right hand going from your left to the right.
  • Make a full circle moving clockwise with your left hand.
  • While the left hand is above, your right hand is below and follows the circular clockwise movement of your left hand.
Massage Technique #4: I Love You
It's a special form of touch therapy in which you tell your baby "I love you" in loving tones, while spelling out "I-L-U" on her stomach. This is my favorite technique.

  • Letter "I." Do an I-shaped stroke with your right hand on baby's left tummy (your right).
  • Letter "L." Make a backward "L" going from your left to the right.
  • Letter "U." Make an inverted U going from your left to the right. Say "I love you"as you go through the series of motion in a warm soft voice.
Massage Technique #5: Back and forth
It helps develop baby's back muscles that will eventually be supporting her spine.
  • Start with both your hands together at the top of back, at right angle to the spine.
  • Move hands back and forth in opposite directions, going down her back to the buttocks then up her shoulders and back down once again.
Massage Technique #6: Milking
It helps strengthen baby's limb muscles and bones and helps baby become more flexible.
  • Stroke one leg or arm of baby as if you were milking a cow.
  • "Milk" leg or arm with both hands, one following the other.
  • Touch her hand and foot using thumb over thumb motion covering entire hand or sole.
  • Squeeze each finger or toe and finish with a soothing pull.
Massage Tehnique #7: Rolling
It helps make baby's arm and leg muscles stronger. This is my second favorite technique.
  • Roll baby's arm or leg between your hand from elbow or knee to the wrist or ankle.
  • Use oil to reduce friction and give a smooth and gentle glide to your touch.
  • Begin with a very light touch and gradually increase pressure as you become more confident and your baby gets used to the massage.
  • Maintain eye-to-eye contact with your baby.
  • Be sensitive to your baby's cues. If he cries a little, try to calm him down before proceeding. If he cries forcefully, stop the massage. She might want to be held, breastfed or is sleepy.
  • Massage can be done anytime of the day. But if done in the morning, it can help you and your baby get ready for a great day of adventure. It's also effective in the evening to help baby to relax and make her sleep better.
  • Massage your baby right after she is fed.
  • Wake her up for touch therapy.
  • Start touch therapy against your baby's will and force her to a position for massage.
Credits: Johnson's Baby Oil Touch Therapy Guide