Infant Massage Charlotte
Being touched and caressed, being massaged, is food for the infant. Food as necessary as minerals, vitamins and proteins.
- Dr. Frederick Leboyer
The benefits of massage for an infant are seemingly endless. Here are a handful of them worth understanding....
1. Massage builds a sense of security for your child:
Touch is first way we teach respect, value and trust to and for our children.
The sense of touch is the first sense to develop in utero and is truly their first form of communication; the language of a baby. Biologically speaking, human infants need skin to skin contact a majority of the day to truly thrive and feel secure.
2. Massage helps infants grow by helping food absorption and digestion:
Massage. . ."stimulates a branch of the cranial nerve called the vegetative vagus, which, in turn, stimulates the gastrointestinal tract, releasing hormones like glucose and insulin". . .assisting food absorption and building up digestive function." (The Vital Touch, Heller, PhD. Holt 1997)
3. Massage helps to build the bond and attachment with your child:
Intentional positive touch is an integral part of establishing a secure bond with your child. Actively building a secure attachment enhances the development of your child's confidence, self- esteem., and sense of security/ safety. The act of massage is a wonderful opportunity to facilitate this attachment and is particularly useful in the situation of preterm or special needs infants, postpartum depression or stressful early life environments such as, adoptive & foster relationships, working parents or those simply lacking extended familial support.
4. Massage reduces disorganization of nerves and works to build a strong nervous system:
assisting with self-regulation and coping mechanisms.
Massage quickens and facilitates the growth of the myelin sheath, the layer of fat surrounding the nerves in the brain, which improves connections between neurons, thereby reducing overstimulation stress.
5. Massage can reduce anxiety, stress and improve quality of sleep for Mom and baby:
Massage helps the body reduce the levels of stress hormones, while increasing the levels of anti-stress hormones such as oxytocin and serotonin. The presence of these anti-stress hormones allows your infant to improve his/her ability to self-regulate and build environmental coping mechanisms. This benefit on stress hormones occurs in both child AND caregiver.
6. Infant Massage increases muscular tone:
(as well can decrease tone in special need situations by altering stroke and effort).
It reduces disorganization of nerves by facilitating the growth of the myelin sheath around the nerve, establishing bodily boundaries and improving mind-body awareness, coordination and balance.
7. Massage can help treat a number of common baby ailments/ obstacles:
including colic, gas, nasal or chest congestion, excessive fussiness and, with special considerations, fever.
8. This list only touches the tip of the iceberg.
To know more, visit the Articles & Scientific Research page.
Sign up or view Full series or Intro open course dates.
Instructional options include:
*Private one-on-one lessons, in your home (full series)
*Private mommy/ support group classes (full series)
*Open courses (full series)
* Introduction to Infant Massage (single class)
Contact me with any questions