University of Warwick
A team of researchers from Warwick Medical School and the Institute of Education have reviewed nine paediatric massage studies. The studies involved a total of 598 babies under 6 months of age.
Parents were trained by professional instructors in appropriate massage techniques. Following the intervention, a range of significant results were noted. Compared to control groups, the massaged infants cried less, slept better and had lower levels of cortisol (a stress hormone).
One study found that massage affected the release of melatonin, a hormone that regulates a persons 'body clock', helping infants to have a good sleep/wake cycle and develop good sleeping patterns.
Another study found that massage was able to assist with attachment and bonding for mothers suffering from postnatal depression.
Parents who wish to massage their babies are able to learn at local classes facilitated by either a Certified Infant Massage Instructor or Paediatric Massage Consultant.
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