Before Luisa was born I spent a lot of time reading books and researching online to find out what kinds of activities we could do together. I really wanted to get involved in as many clubs and classes as possible to give us a support network as I’m living away from my family. As it turned out Luisa was born via emergency c-section. This meant I spent the first 6-8 weeks of her little life pretty much housebound. I only really went out when Matt was off work and so my plans to get involved in lots of activities fell by the wayside. Once I had built up my strength and confidence I felt like we’d missed the boat a little. Lots of the classes i’d researched seemed to be geared towards newborns so we haven’t really got involved with very many. Cue mum guilt.
When I was approached by Netmums to try out some Johnson’s products and learn more about baby massage I was so excited. It might seem silly but it hadn’t occurred to me that you don’t necessarily need to attend a special class to be taught how to massage your own baby. Needless to say I jumped at the opportunity and I was really surprised to discover so many benefits of baby massage, not just for Luisa but for the whole family.
I decided to incorporate baby massage into Luisas bathtime routine. First of all I put a little JOHNSON’S® TOP-TO-TOE® Baby Bath in the bath water, I also used it to wash her hair. I was actually really impressed as It was very gentle on her scalp. I had previously been using just water because she still has a touch of cradle cap and the other shampoos I tried had really irritated her little head. Bathtime can be about much more than just keeping baby clean. You can use the time to stimulate babies sense of smell and touch to help their development. All the splashing and chatter creates a fun atmosphere for you both.
Luisa absolutely loves the bath but like most babies she isn’t a fan of getting dried and dressed afterwards. The first time I tried baby massage post-bath I was a bit nervous that she’d be cold and not enjoy it so I followed the tips in Johnson’s guide about having a warm and calm room. I found that asking her permission and chatting about what I was doing helped her to relax and enjoy the experience even though she couldn’t understand what I was saying. It felt a bit silly at first but once she started cooing and smiling it was like she was joining in the conversation and she relaxed into the massage.
If you’re feeling a bit unsure about how to go about giving your baby a massage I really recommend looking at the guides available on the Johnson’s website.
Now that I have the know-how I give Luisa a massage after every bath. I think it really helps her to sleep better if we’re doing it in the evening and she definitely enjoys it. Recently Matt has started being the one to give her a massage which she’s really happy about. Her little face lit up the first time she realised it was daddy time!
The good thing about using JOHNSON’S® Baby Oil for a massage is that because it absorbs into the skin so quickly you don’t necessarily have to do it after a bath. Last week when Luisa was loaded with the cold and fussy due to teething I wanted to help her relax but I didn’t want her to get wet given that she wasn’t well. After a quick massage and a soothing chat she had settled down enough for a cuddle and a feed before bed. By using baby massage regularly she’s learnt to expect a calming and happy experience so she now relaxes and enjoys it even faster.
Now that we’re all enjoying baby massage so much the only thing I would say is that I wish we’d started sooner! I think it would have really helped build our confidence handling Luisa in the early days. I would really encourage new parents to try baby massage and not feel intimidated.
I am a member of the Netmums Blogging Network, a unique community of parent bloggers from around the UK who have been handpicked by the Netmums team to review products and brands on their behalf. I may have been paid expenses, and have been supplied with a product sample for this review, but retain all editorial control. All my Netmums Reviews will display the Netmums logo within the post.
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