Infant massage is a great way to bond with your newborn while helping him calm and connect with his own body.
You and your baby
Undress your newborn down to just her diaper. Place your baby on her back on a comfortable, clean surface. Using your favorite baby lotion, begin by gently stroking your baby with your fingertips and talking in a soft voice. As you gently “massage” your baby, you can describe the different parts of her body: legs, arms, tummy, feet. You can also make up a silly song about them as you go through the massage. Here are suggested “massage techniques” for your baby:
On her tummy, run your fingertips in a gentle circular, clockwise motion.
On her head, trace a heart on her face.
For her legs, gently hold her legs together and bend her knees up toward her chest, then pull them down again.
On her arms, roll her arms between your two hands.
Look at your baby in the eyes while you talk to her throughout the massage. If your baby fusses during any part of the massage, move to a different part of the body.
Making massage a part of your newborn’s night-time routine is an excellent way to get your newborn ready for sleep. Find out more about establishing routines here.
This activity helps your newborn develop motor skills, sensory skills, and social-emotional skills.