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Is Baby Massage Necessary, 5 reasons how your baby can benefit

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Babies are commonly believed to be receptive to massage therapy throughout their early childhood. Studies have found that infant massage can have a variety of positive effects on the physical and mental health of infants, including increased weight gain and better body awareness. In this article, we discuss whether infantile massage is a necessary component of infant care, and what some of the benefits are to the infant and parents.

Benefits of Infant Massage

There are many benefits for infants receiving massage therapy, including better sleep patterns and weight gain. Here is a detailed look at the benefits of infant massage:

1. Better sleep patterns

Many infants do not experience the same restful sleep that most adults and animals do. This is because many infants are born premature, or have colic or other ailments that disrupt normal sleep patterns. The infant massage therapist can help to improve infant sleep patterns, providing a safe and calm environment in which they can rest and recuperate.

If the infant has colic, the masseuse can massage not only the child but also the mother. Massaging the mother has a soothing effect on her, which in turn helps to calm the baby and make them more manageable.

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2. Improved body awareness

It is suggested that the infant is not fully aware of the sensations in their arms and legs during the first few months, but by massaging the limbs of an infant it has been demonstrated that they can become more aware of their own limbs. This allows them to have better muscle control, and also allows the infant to get used to the sensations of their limbs and become more comfortable with them as they develop.

For instance, the infant may have circulation problems in the legs due to disease, or be born with a club foot, but massaging their limbs has been shown that this can improve blood circulation and muscle control.

3. Increased weight gain

Many premature babies and babies who have colic experience problems with weight gain, or even lose weight. The infant massage therapist can help the child to gain weight by massaging the infant and encouraging them to feed.

The massages help the child to relax, which improves their ability to digest food. When the child is relaxed and comfortable, they will feel better, and by doing so they will gain weight. If a child is gaining weight, this will often lead to the alleviation of colic and other ailments.

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4. Promotion of breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is a natural process for infant feeding, but in many cultures, it is not seen as the norm. The infant massage therapist can help to promote breastfeeding and increase its popularity through education and advertisement.

A massaged baby who is breastfed is much more likely to continue to breastfeed because it helps ease the pain of breastfeeding and feed better. By doing so, they gain weight and also improve their health through improved feeding habits.

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5. Improves hand-eye coordination

By massaging the infant, it has been shown that the infant becomes more aware of their hand and eye coordination. This is because, during a massage, the therapist will use their hands to gently touch the infants’ heads, arms, and legs.

By doing this, the infant becomes more aware of the sensation of touch in their limbs and also becomes more aware of their own hand. This helps to improve hand-eye coordination during development. This is important because most animals use their limbs to hunt and gather food.

6. Reduces fussy behavior (Bonus)

Many infants suffer from colic and other afflictions that can cause them to become fussy or irritable. The massage therapist can help to calm the child and reduce this fussy behavior, as well as help to promote sleep, food digestion, and increase weight gain.

The fussy behavior can also be calmed by allowing the infant to breastfeed. A calm, healthy and relaxed infant is a happy infant and will be much less likely to reject the breast or become irritable.

So, is baby massage necessary? Yes, it is recommended since it helps to promote sleep, weight gain, and a better understanding of the bodies of both parents and children. Furthermore, it helps to calm the child before they are put down for sleep. As with all things in life, there are risks associated with massage.