Reflexology is a treatment where gentle pressure is applied to the feet or hands using the thumbs and fingers. It is based on the theory that reflexes in the feet and hands correspond to each organ and structure in the body, and are linked to those organs by energy channels.
This page features all our blog posts tagged with ‘Baby Massage’.
I used to work in in the corporate world for an insurance broker in London and it was never really something that I’d planned to do, I just happened to ‘fall into’ it straight from school. I always hoped that one day I would nd a career that I really felt passionate about.
Well that day came shortly after my son, Henry was born in 2012 when I went along to a MamaBabyBliss Baby Massage class. Henry had been suffering terribly from reflux and colic and I too was struggling to cope as a new mummy, in fact I didn’t know it at the time but I was later diagnosed with Post Natal Depression. The Baby Massage helped both Henry and me in so many more ways than I could have possibly imagined and were an absolute lifeline for me at the time. So much so that we went on to do Baby Yoga, which again enhanced both Henry’s wellbeing and mine in the most beautiful way.
It’s the start of the month, and we thought we should get a bit more personal. You see, MamaBabyBliss couldn’t spread their magic to you all without our wonderful teachers, all of whom undergo over a year of training (with ongoing CPD training) to bring our programme of classes to you.
So today, we want you to meet some of the faces behind our classes so you can delve a little into their world and why they love teaching you all so much.
Recently, a piece of research was issued by the University of Manchester stating that natural oils such as olive oil and sunflower oil are not safe to use on baby’s skin. Vegetable oils have been used for centuries for massaging babies across the world, so what should you use?
As a company, we believe that natural is best. The research suggests that it’s better to use products that are petroleum-based. During baby massage, we massage every part of our babies body including their tiny little fingers and toes. As we know, babies are fond of nibbling on both! So, ask yourself, would you put something that is petroleum-based in your mouth and eat it?
Digging a little deeper into the research, the article highlights that many skincare products for babies have only been tested for cosmetic purposes. This is true. Many products haven’t been tested on babies and we do believe that is essential. As a concerned mum, I know that I would want that added reassurance, which is why the ‘Hugs’ Baby Massage Oil and the entire MamaBabyBliss baby range has been clinically tested and paediatrician approved as completely safe for babies. We’ve also won awards for our ‘Hugs’ oil and many of our other natural products – most recently by Jayney Lee Grace who only advocates the best of the best in the world of natural products. Thousands of mums have used the oil and love it and interestingly enough, because of the ingredients (jojoba which mimics the skin’s sebum and camomile which is calming), they’ve actually reported a reduction in eczema. Eczema can be caused by many environmental factors including pollution and nutrition.
Ultimately, it should always be a matter of choice as to what parents prefer, but it would be a shame to start abandoning what is natural and has been used for many centuries and is still widely used used in other cultures, in favour of chemical and synthetic.
As per midwives and health visitors’ recommendation, skincare products should be avoided on newborn skin up to the age of 4 weeks as their skin is still so delicate and sensitive.
Baby massage is truly a gift at our fingertips and massaging our babies regularly provides a range of benefits. We have put together the MamaBabyBliss A-Z of what a difference baby massage can make to you and your baby.
A is for Ailments. Baby massage can naturally alleviate a range of common ailments from colic, wind, constipation, sinus congestion and much more!
B is for Bonding with our babies. Through the release of hormones such as the ‘love’ and ‘cuddle’ hormone oxytocin, baby massage helps us connect and bond with our babies.
C is for Communication. Because babies can’t understand language, their earliest form of communication, even in the womb, is touch. Baby massage enables us to communicate our love to our babies through our fingertips.
D is for Daddy time. Dads often don’t get to spend a lot of one-to-one time with their babies. Research has shown that baby massage helps dads to communicate and bond with their babies
E is for Eye Contact. Babies love gazing into your eyes and vice versa. Baby massage enables us to come up, close and personal to our little ones and fall in love with them time and time again.
F is for Fun. Babies love to be massaged and you’ll love the smiles and giggles that you both will enjoy together.
G is for Growth. Babies who are massaged regularly feed better and put on more weight than babies who are not.
H is for Holistic. Baby massage benefits us and our babies on so many levels: physically, mentally and emotionally.
I is for the Immune system. Massaging our babies helps strengthen their immune system from birth and so can help keep away colds and other infections.
J is for Joy. Baby massage quite simply makes us happy. It keeps our baby happy and as they say, a happy baby is a happy mummy!
K is for Kindness. Baby massage is one of the most gentle and loving gifts that we can give to ourselves and our babies.
L is for the Lymphatic system. During baby massage, we boost the lymphatic system, which is responsible for removing toxins and strengthening the body’s natural defences.
M is for Mummy. As well as baby massage relaxing our babies, it also relaxes us. When we massage our babies, oxytocin is released in us as well, which helps reduce our own stress levels.
N is for the Neural system. When we massage our babies we are working on their nervous system. Lots of messages are sent to their brain, which helps with their neural or brain development.
O is for Oxytocin. Oxytocin is the ‘love’ or ‘cuddle’ home that is stimulated every time we massage our babies. This helps us to bond and connect with our babies
P is for Prolactin. When we massage our babies, the hormone prolactin is stimulated which helps with milk production and breast-feeding.
Q is for Quiet Time. Massaging our babies enables us to enjoy some un-distracted one-to-one quiet-time with our baby
R is for Relaxation. Baby massage helps reduce cortisol, which is the stress hormone. Baby massage helps relax both the baby and the person giving the massage so it is win-win all around!
S is for Soothing. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, baby massage can help quickly settle and soothe our babies.
T is for Touch. Who doesn’t love a hug or a cuddle. Baby massage provides vital skin-to-skin touch, which our babies love and need to thrive, develop and grow.
W is for Wind. Massaging our babies from birth helps strengthen their digestive system and can help alleviate wind, constipation and other tummy upsets.
X is for Extraordinary. Baby massage is quite simply magic at your fingertips. You don’t need anything else other than you, a natural oil and your baby.
Y is for Yes. Because you don’t need any fancy equipment, you can practice baby massage anywhere and at any time.
Z is for Zzzzz. Baby massage helps encourage sleep in our babies and who doesn’t want that 🙂
Baby massage for sleep
When a baby or a child cries, or if a friend or loved one is upset, there’s no greater comfort than a hug. Touch is a powerful therapeutic tool that we all have at our fingertips – literally.
Because the skin is the first organ to develop, a baby’s most powerful sense, even when in the womb is touch. Massaging your baby from when they are young has a number of long-term physiological and emotional benefits. Regular massage can help build a baby’s immune system, boost his or her respiratory system, stimulate the circulatory system and balance the baby’s nervous system.
When we massage our babies, we also help release the hormone oxytocin in the baby, which regulates the cortisol or stress levels. In other words baby massage can help relax a tiny one, reducing periods of crying and so aid sleep – welcome news for any new parent.
As part of Sleep Awareness Week, we have put together this short baby massage sequence that you can integrate as part of your daily bed and bath-time routine.
After your baby has been bathed, bring your baby into a room that is warm and dimly lit. You don’t need any special equipment for baby massage. A changing mat and towel on a safe space are fine.
First of all, stroke your baby from head to toe. This signals to your baby that it is time for baby massage.
Next, apply a little natural, chemical free oil to the palms of your hand.
Start with both your hands in the centre of the chest and make a lovely heart shape, sweeping down to the baby’s abdomen. Repeat this several times.
Then placing your hands on your baby’s chest, sweep the hands up and over the shoulders and all the way down the arms, giving your baby an upper body massage. Repeat this several times.
One of the other advantages of baby massage is that it also helps strengthen the digestive system, so helping relieve common ailments and discomfort such as wind or constipation.
It is great to include a short tummy massage as part of your daily bedtime routine. Apply more oil if necessary and using your fingertips of one hand, make a gentle circular movement in a CLOCKWISE direction around the belly button. This helps move digested matter through the intestines and out of the body. Repeat for a few minutes.
Finally, move down to the baby’s legs. Apply more oil if necessary and then supporting one ankle with one hand, use the other palm to firmly stroke the outside of the leg from the ankle to the top of the thigh. Then glide your hand down the back of the leg. Change hands and repeat on the inside of the leg. Massage the leg several times then change legs.
Repeat several times.
At the end, slowly sweep your hands down the baby’s body, from the chest down to the toes to signify it is the end of massage.
Throughout the massage, you can also sing a soothing lullaby. Take your time with the massage and see how relaxed you and baby will be.
After the massage you can give your baby a feed and then put them into their bed. They should be nice and sleepy. You can also gently stroke their forehead, which also helps soothe them to sleep.