Your child adores being hugged and tickled and loves being looked after by you. Changing and washing her are special moments for you to spend connecting with your child. A child massage can become one of these shared times.
The benefits of massage
Soothing and calming, child massages can provide your child with a sense of well-being. A child massage relieves your child from tension and helps her relax.
Touch also tones her body and helps boost vitality. It can help with digestion and act as relief from other problems such as constipation, blocked nose and eczema. A child massage can also induce peaceful sleep and create a safe and secure environment for your child. This is a tender moment to share, a magical exchange between you and your child.
Massaging your child
Before massaging your child, check with your doctor first; and make sure that you are relaxed too. Your child will sense if you’re stressed and will not enjoy being touched. It is best to massage your child in the evening just before bath time, to help her release the day’s tensions. Cover your hands with baby oil or moisturising cream and then start the child massage.
For your first time, don’t worry too much about massaging her whole body. If your child is unfamiliar with massage, she may be a little surprised or anxious. Your contact should be firmer than a caress and the pressure you exert should be stimulating. Reassure your child by talking or singing to her and always keep one hand on her. Watch your child carefully, look into her eyes and listen to her babbling as your child communicates with you.
Easy and gentle massages
Lay your hand flat against your child’s stomach. Then, gently make large clockwise circles. Try not to press down, use just the weight of your hand. If your child suffers from colic, massage her stomach from top to bottom, alternating your hand in a sweeping motion. Finish the child massage by laying the palm of your hand flat against her stomach. Massaging the stomach can also relieve any minor digestion problems (constipation and colic).
Start the child massage with soothing motions. Move up the inside of her legs and move down on the outside. Repeat this action several times, and then make circular motions around her legs, down to the bottom of her feet. Massaging your child’s legs will help her feel relaxed as they are often tucked up or moving about.
Glide your hands all the way to under your child’s armpits and move them down her sides. Then, move your hands back to her chest and start again. If your child opens her arms, continue your movement down to the tips of her fingers. This massage opens the chest and helps respiration.
Massage her toes one by one, including the space between them. Using your thumbs, stroke the bottom of her feet several times, then massage from the heels to the base of her toes. This will help relax your child and create a sense of well-being.
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