Becoming increasingly popular, infant massage is usually taught
to new mothers as a way of bonding with their newborn and of
encouraging infant health.
A study at the University of Miami showed that infants who
received 15 minutes of massage a day gained weight 47% faster and
demonstrated other physical and neurological benefits. Another
study revealed that infants and children who received massage
regularly from parents and grandparent volunteers had lower levels
of anxiety and stress hormones and improved rates of recovery.
Infant massage involves a set of specific techniques that should
only be demonstrated by a trained health professional. Babies'
bodies are developing and while usually quite flexible, need to be
treated with care. The amount of pressure to be used varies with
the part of the body being massaged.