The great thing about infant massage is that it can relieve many discomforts that may be the cause of colic for your baby. It’s great for providing relaxation, gas relief, and eliminating constipation. Believe it or not when a certain massage technique is performed it can also be used to effectively treat diarrhea. (Which is of course, the opposite of constipation)
The infant massage technique taught in this article is a basic method used to relieve and relax your colic baby.
Start out with your baby lying on a flat and comfortable surface wearing nothing but a loose fitting diaper. (Make sure to never leave her unattended on any elevated surface) A blanket on the floor will work fine. Put a small amount of oil (baby oil is fine) in your hand and rub them together. (This will distribute the oil onto the surface of your hands evenly as well as make sure your hands are warm before starting the massage) Don’t use so much oil that it makes your baby’s skin slippery and shiny. If this is the case wipe some off with a towel.
With the finger tips of your right hand, stroke the abdomen in a downward motion starting just below the rib cage and stopping just above the pelvic area (next to the belly button on the right hand side) using gentle pressure. Your right side not the baby’s right side. Do this several times.
After doing this several times, instead of just going down the side of the abdomen, we will start from left to right above the belly button and then go down the right side in one continuous motion making a “figure 7”, going across and then down. (remember this is your left side not the baby’s left side)
After doing this motion several times we will add an upward movement on the other side of the abdomen turning our “figure 7” into an upside down “figure u”. Starting on the left side of the belly button ( just above the pelvic area and stopping just below the rib cage) in an upward movement, then going across above the belly button then down the other side of the belly button in a clockwise direction. Repeat this several times using gentle pressure.
Finish up the massage with some leg movements. You can do slow steady bicycle movements a few times (ie. alternating leg bends) and then gently bend both kness up toward the chest (ideally the legs will touch the chest) and then slowly extend them back out. Do these leg movements several times as well.
By doing this series several times throughout the day it will dramatically reduce the colic symptoms in the evening and at night. Don’t wait until the symptoms are in full swing. Although it can help in the middle of a colic episode by helping your baby to relax, it is more effective when done throughout the day when your baby is calm and the abdomen muscles aren’t quite so rigid.
Visit my blog called The Colic Baby for more tips about caring for a Colic Baby.