The persistent cry of a colicky baby can leave exhausted parents desperate for a ‘cure’. There is an increasing amount of literature and evidence suggesting that this draining condition can be significantly improved by gently massaging a baby regularly.
Take a look at how to treat colic with baby massage.
* According to Parenting HQ.com, massaging a baby as a means to relieve colic should begin at your baby’s head.
* Lay your baby on her back and gently but firmly rotate your fingers in circular motions on your baby’s head.
* Gently massage her temples with your thumbs and continue down her face and neck until you arrive at her chest.
* Working from the centre of her chest outwards, use your whole hand in long, slow strokes with the intention of spreading out those coiled muscles.
* Move on to your little one’s hands and arms and gently roll her arms between the palms of your hands whilst stroking her hand with your fingertips.
* Move to the stomach and be extra cautious not to apply too much pressure on your baby’s gassy tummy. Massaging your baby’s stomach in a circular motion, using long slow strokes as opposed to short ‘pinchy’ ones, will promote digestion and can be effective in helping to relieve the gas trapped in the baby’s intestinal tract
* The ‘Paddlewheel technique’ is often linked as a method of massage to help treat colic in babies. Position your hands on baby’s chest with your fingers pointing towards her head and move your hands to her groin in one smooth and firm stroke.
* Pick up baby’s legs and pull her knees towards her chest so that her heels are almost touching her bottom. Push her thighs very gently towards her stomach.
* The ‘cycling technique’ has also been associated with being an effective way to relieve colic in babies with massage. Gently pick up your baby’s ankles and rotate them one at a time in a bike riding motion.
* Slowly massage your baby’s feet applying pressure to the arches with your thumbs.
Whilst baby massage is completely safe and can be a great way for a parent and baby to bond with one another, it is advised that you don’t massage her for too long, as this can overstimulate your baby – definitely not desirable before bedtime!