When babies are born, their skin can adequately adapt to extrauterine life. However, their outer skin layer is still thin and only develops a protective barrier when they reach one month old. Also, their skin is still delicate until they reach one year old, so it is important to choose the right kind of baby massage oil for their sensitive skin.
Giving massages to your little ones can increase your confidence in identifying their needs and caring for them. A research study about infant massages conducted by K. Onozawa et al, shows that it promotes the mother and baby relationship, especially for moms who have postpartum depression. It also promotes sleep, increasing weight gain, relieving gas, stimulating digestion, bonding with their parents, as well as many other things. The best way to give a massage to your baby is in a calm and quiet area with natural body oil.
When choosing a massage oil for your baby, it is important to review the ingredients for sensitivity levels. During the first few months, the baby's skin is normally dry but the dryness goes away eventually. Their skin is delicate at this stage. Skin products that contains parabens, chemicals, dyes, and fragrances should be avoided.
Good oil options are natural and organic that includes coconut, canola, corn, olive, grapeseed, apricot, avocado, or sunflower oils. These can be absorbed easily and also easily digested if they happen to suck their thumb after a relaxing massage. It is suggested to stay away from store-bought baby oil or mineral oil since they tend to clog pores.
Be also cautious with hypoallergenic products. Although they can less likely cause an allergic reaction, it doesn't mean that they are milder than other products. Aside from choosing natural and organic products, it will also be best if the baby massage oil has fewer safe ingredients.
You may incorporate pure essential oils into your carrier oil to boost the aroma to add to the relaxation of your baby. Oils that may boost relaxation include lavender, valerian, jasmine, and chamomile. It is important to test the carrier oil and essential oil on a small spot of the skin to ensure there will not be an allergic reaction.
Remember, a little bit goes a long way!
Here's a short video on how to massage your baby:
Hope this helps and enjoy your precious moments with your little one!