Welcoming your little bundle of joy into your lives brings a lot of happiness and responsibilities! The biggest challenge being the baby is unable to convey the difficulties experienced. Gas formation is one of the most common problems newborn babies suffer from and often experts recommend a baby massage. Gas trouble can keep your baby distressed during nights leading to sleepless long nights for both the mother and the baby. Learning these simple massage techniques can be a lifesaver when your child is in pain. Here we have come up with some massaging techniques which you may try.
Things to Remember Before Starting Baby Belly Massage for Gas
Baby massage can be a wonderful way to connect and bond with your little one! But there are certain things to remember before you begin with baby massage:
- It is very important to speak to a pediatrician about any remedies including the massage you are going to try at home.
- The doctor will share more vital details regarding the safety and effectiveness of the solutions you may want to try.
- Once, you get the approval from your doctor you can start by checking with the mood of your baby before trying out a massage. It is recommended that she is calm, and happy when you start with a massage.
- While massaging your baby, if at any time they become fussy or uncomfortable, stop the massage immediately.
- It is highly recommended massaging your baby early in the morning or just before bedtime as a part of the night-time ritual.
- You may massage your baby daily or occasionally depending upon how your baby is responding to the massage therapy.
- Always maintain eye contact with the baby while massaging. Start with a gentle touch and slowly increase the pressure as you progress and make sure that the baby remains happy and content all the while.
- If the baby starts stiffening the arms or looking away then it may not be an ideal time for a massage. If your baby is experiencing any kind of pain then first use indirect techniques like leg pumping, stretching etc. to help let out the gas first.
- Wait for at least an hour after feeding the baby for the massage to avoid the risk of indigestion or vomiting.
- If the baby pushes her legs straight and tenses up then you may place your hands under her buttocks, bend the knees and slowly rock her hips from side to side. This will most likely relax her and also allow you to perform the massage peacefully without force.
- Always massage your baby in a warm and quiet place while placing them on their back on a soft mat or towel. Keep talking gentle and soothing words to the baby while massaging.
- To make the massage more comfortable it is recommended to use an oil or lotion but make sure that you always use baby specific products so that it’s gentle on the skin of your baby. Completely avoid nut oils, instead use an organic or edible oil and always do a patch test before proceeding with the massage.
- Make it a ritual to pour a few drops of oil into your palms and rub your hands together near your baby’s ears. The soothing sound of your palms rubbing on a regular basis will convey the message to your baby that it will be followed by a massage.
Baby Tummy Massage for Gas
Massaging your baby can be a wonderful experience for both you and the baby, it not only helps remove the trapped air but also stimulates the overall growth and development of your baby. The baby stomach massage strokes are designed to move the trapped air from the tummy and intestine towards the bowels. Most of the belly massage strokes begin from the lower right side of the baby’s belly and end towards the left side of the belly. Some of the massage techniques are listed below:
1. Knees Up Press
Support your baby’s knees by trapping your index finger behind the knees and bring the knees bent together towards her belly. Now, gently press and bounce the knees into her tummy. This one is an easy and effective technique to relieve gas.
2. Hands of a Clock Movement
Imagine that your baby’s tummy is the face of a clock. Now, starting at 7’o clock gently press and move your hand in a clockwise motion (starting from left to right). Follow the motion with the other hand.
3. I Love You Baby Gas Massage
For this, you need to hold your index finger and middle finger together. Now, starting from the right side of your baby’s belly end trace the letter ‘I.’ Next, follow it by tracing the letter ‘L’ in sideways, you can start from the top left corner of your baby’s tummy moving across and down the right side of the tummy. Trace all the alphabets and you can finish with an inverted U starting from the bottom left corner of the belly tracing upwards across the torso (above the belly button) and coming back down towards the right side. Do tell your baby how much you love her while doing this special massage for her!
4. Paddling Massage
For this technique, place the long, broadside of your hands on your baby’s belly horizontally (such that the little finger is towards the tummy). Now, gently press below the rib cage and slide your hands down towards the length of the baby’s tummy. Follow the same with the other hand.
5. Thumb Fulling
For this, firmly hold your baby at the waist and now place both the thumbs firmly across your baby’s tummy, just above the belly button. Now, gently press in and slide the thumbs to the sides of her abdomen simultaneously (in such a motion that the thumbs move away from one another in the opposite direction).
6. Sun and Moon Massage Technique
Use your fingertips to draw imaginary circles around your baby’s belly button in a clockwise direction. Continue tracing full circle strokes with one hand, while the other hand follows behind the first hand to trace a half-circle. Make it more interesting by singing the songs of sun and moon aloud to your baby while performing the massage. Perform this in a clockwise direction.
7. Moon-walking Technique
For this massage technique, start just above the belly button on the left side of your baby’s tummy. Now, slide your pointer and middle fingers across the baby’s torso towards the right side.
Each of the above massage techniques can be performed 3-4 times at a time and can be repeated twice a day for two weeks or more until the time gas trouble persists. Always end the massage with ‘touch relaxation’ by placing your hands firmly on the baby’s tummy, this will help you connect with your baby’s breathing and also send messages of love and warmth to her!
Baby Foot Reflexology Massage for Gas
Apart from doing a tummy massage, you can also try baby foot massage for gas. Foot reflexology is associated with improving the conditions of gas, constipation, and indigestion; however, scientific evidence is still lacking in this regard. As a precaution, it’s best to consult with your pediatrician before beginning with foot reflexology at home. If your doctor gives a go-ahead symbol then only go for this massage technique. The pressure point for the stomach and intestine is located around the upper middle part of the foot, just below the pad. Place your hands on this spot and gently stroke this area to help relieve the gas.
Trying out the infant gas relief massage at home with your baby can be really fun and help you create a great bonding with your child. Gas relief massage for a newborn is quite easy to perform and is also very effective. However, you need to take proper precautions before beginning with the massage in order to avoid any unpleasant situation for your little one.