Guest Blog by Ashley Oates from Chilled beans – Baby massage baby yoga have been practised in the East for hundreds of years. Traditionally grandmothers would massage babies and often the mothers too. How great would that be?! The benefits of baby massage have since been scientifically proven to help babies to be calmer, feed better and gain weight more quickly and consistently. It can help to settle babies and improve their sleep patterns whilst also enhancing communication and bonding between the parent and baby by providing special time together. Babies enjoy the close physical contact with parents and are soothed by it. Just think about how you feel after a full body massage?
What many parents are looking for when they come to baby massage is help finding relief to a number of conditions suffered by babies which can cause them to be uncomfortable during the first months of life and beyond – particularly colic and trapped wind. Massage tones the digestive tract, expels wind from the body, breaks down large air bubbles and speeds myelination between the nerve cells in the stomach and the brain making the digestion of food and elimination of waste more efficient.
What you may be surprised to hear is that infant massage can also bring relief of teething pain by massaging the mouth, gums and reflexology points and ease colds and congestion by helping to drain the nasal passages and chest of mucus. It’s a great tool to have in your locker when your baby is too young for most cold relief or pain medications.
Massage relaxes both parent and baby. The parent has to slow down and concentrate fully on baby and as they massage Oxcytocin is produced which calms and reduces stress levels for both whilst also increasing feelings of love and attachment. Oxcytocin helps to lower the levels of stress hormones in the body and therefore lowers blood pressure and heart rate and improves appetite.
Finally one of the most important benefits of attending a baby massage class rather than trying to learn from a book or Youtube, is how great it can be for a new mum’s mental health and well being. Getting out of the house with a new baby can be pretty daunting. I remember those days well so I make sure that my classes are relaxed friendly and welcoming. There is no judging over breast or bottle feeding, no prizes for one type of birth over another, no special treatment for one type of nappy as opposed to another and definitely no early starts! We sit down with a hot drink and a biscuit and we have a natter about what our babies are up to (mine are 2 and 4yrs but still my babies!) before learning a new area of massage each week. Talking to other new mums can be really helpful and it’s a great way to make new friends for you and you baby whilst learning a new skill too!
find out more on Ashley’s classes or to get booked in call or visit the website: www.chilledbeans.com 07788985304
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