Saturday, November 25, 2017
Benefits of Infant Massage

Benefits of massage for babies:

  • Supports the bonding process
  • Improves the blood circulation & digestion
  • Sends a message of unconditional love & acceptance
  • The baby learns how to relax and become more calm
  • The baby feels that it is respected and his/her needs are cared for and considered
  • Can improve sleep patterns.
  • Improves self-esteem and self-image
  • Furthering of the development of the digestive tract and the respiratory organs
  • Reduction of colic symptoms and digestive problems
  • Improves muscle tone
  • Sensory stimulation & integration

 

Benefits of infant massage for the parent / caregiver:

  • Bonding and relaxation
  • Enhance communication
  • Increased parental competence in relating to and handling the baby
  • Fun and loving way to spend quality time with your precious baby
  • Opportunities for close bonds and intensive communion between two people.
  • Increase in prolactin/oxytocin production (hormone which enhances “motherly instincts / wellbeing)
  • Development of awareness through loving touch and caring attention

 

Research studies on infant massage:

Click on the image above to download the full article of this research study.

PATERNAL CARE MAY INFLUENCE PERCEPTIONS OF PATERNAL RESEMBLANCE - 2010

Abstract:

Father-child resemblance is increasingly attracting attention from researchers interested in studying paternal investment. The current study sought to determine whether a quasi-experimental infant massage intervention would increase father's perceptions of resemblance. The study included a dozen fathers in each of two groups: the first received an intensive series of lessons on infant-father massage along with their infants, while the second group served as a neutral control. We failed to find significant correlations between paternal investment and resemblance, but we found that fathers who participated in the infant massage intervention reported significantly larger post-study ratings of resemblance and lower ratings of paternal stress. This suggests that the relationship between father-child resemblance and paternal investment may be bidirectional.

 

Click on the image above to download the full article of this research study

BABY MASSAGE CLASSES AND THE WORK OF THE INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF INFANT MASSAGE - 2001

Abstract:

This article describes the role of the International Association of Infant Massage (IAIM) in promoting the importance of touch for the developing relationship between the parents and infants. Infants are unique personalities and it is important that the parent learns how to respond appropriately to the infant's needs. Infant massage classes can demonstrate and promote interaction with infants using eye-to-eye contact, recognizing infant cues, talking and singing, and responding in a loving and sensitive manner. The photographs are of an infant massage class held recently in Leicestershir.

 

Click on the image above to download the full article of this research study

INFANT MASSAGE: DEVELOPING AN EVIDENCE BASE FOR HEALTH VISITING PRACTICE - 2002

Abstract:

In common with most complementary interventions, infant massage has not received a great deal of attention from evaluative research, and what little research has been done has been quite equivocal. Its use as an intervention within Health Visiting practice has received even less attention. This modest study sought to evaluate the process and impact of one Health Visitor’s use of infant massage. Data were collected in three forms. Firstly, a postal questionnaire was distributed to those who had accessed the infant massage programme and to a ‘non-intervention’ group (94 and 60 were returned from each group, respectively). This questionnaire included the previously validated Self-Esteem Scale and the Parenting Sense of Competence Scale in addition to biographical and infant massage related questions that were designed for this study. Secondly, those parents attending the programme were invited to complete a programme evaluation questionnaire (n=100). Thirdly, three focus group interviews were held with one group of programme participants—at the start and end of the five-week programme and three months later. This study did not demonstrate any statistically significant impact of infant massage on the selected outcome measures. However, the more qualitative data provided considerable support for the intervention, both in relation to the perceived direct benefits of infant massage and in relation to the health promotion and social benefits of attending the infant massage programme. Indeed, the need to disaggregate the intervention from the mode of delivery in order to demonstrate effectiveness, together with the diffuse effects of massage, render such a study methodologically challenging.

 

Click on the image above download the full article of this research study

INTERVENTIONS TO SUPPORT EARLY RELATIONSHIPS: MECHANISMS IDENTIFIED WITHIN INFANT MASSAGE PROGRAMMES - 2011

Abstract:

The sensitivity of early interactions conveyed through eye contact, voice tone, facial expression and gentle touch plays a crucial role in healthy infant development. Infant massage has been adopted as an early intervention because touch offers a unique opportunity to support early interaction.
This evaluation used a mixed-methods research design and a range of quantitative and qualitative data to identify the context, mechanisms and outcomes of eight infant massage programmes being delivered in socio-economically deprived communities. This paper reports the findings with regard to the mechanisms that were identified to be necessary for the successful delivery of infant massage programmes.  From these findings, 14 mechanisms were identified as important in influencing the uptake and success of infant massage programmes, but there was considerable variability in the extent to which these were realised across programmes. Women and infants with a high level of need were offered infant massage programmes that were lacking in terms of the key mechanisms identified to bring about change.
 

 

 

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