How Massage Can Be Used To Ease Baby Colic and Constipation

Colic and constipation is an umbrella medical term for a group of symptoms including prolonged crying by the baby as well as the presence of gas or bloating or both. Colic/constipation generally affects babies from the age of 2 to 3 weeks. The condition often continues until they are 3- 4 months old and end around the sixth month of existence. A telltale sign of colic and constipation in babies manifests when they pull up their legs often and arch their backs.

Signs of Baby Colic and Constipation

Babies are known to cry, right from birth through their first few months of life. However, the task lies in differentiating between a cry for attention and one that shows a state of distress. The following are the common signs of colic and constipation your baby may display:

  1. Show concern if your baby cries for more than 3 hours a day.
  2. Be on guard if your baby gives out loud tummy rumblings.
  3. Take note when your baby pulls their legs up to their chest many times during the day.
  4. Be concerned when efforts to soothe your baby when crying does not succeed.
  5. Your baby passes wind or stool around the time the crying ends.

Easing Colic and Constipation in Babies

sleeping baby

There are several treatment options for colic/constipation in babies. You could turn to a medical professional to proffer appropriate dosages of probiotics. Studies also show that a touch and gentle tummy rub can also bring about fast relief. Research shows any motion or sound that emulates the beating of the heart, and the sounds generated in the womb may help to calm your baby battling colic.

In this regard, advocates call for the use of massage to ease your baby off the effects of colic/constipation.

Read: Best Baby Gas Relief

Massage For Colic and Constipation In Babies

While the first thing that comes to mind with a case of colic would be a trip to the hospital and a mix of medication, there are other helpful alternatives. One of them is giving a massage. A simple massage has the potential stomach gas and precipitates the movement of dried stool along the intestines.

See: Best Baby Oil For Massage

For a productive massage session for colic relief in your baby, follow these useful tips:

  1. Place your baby on its back, so that you make eye contact with him/her.
  2. View your baby’s stomach as a clock face. Assume the 12 o’ clock position denotes the top of his stomach, 6 o’ clock points to the groin and 3 and 9 highlight the left and right side, respectively.
  3. Take some time to use your fingertips and gently circle the baby’s head. While at this task, maintain eye contact and look for signs and signals that the baby is relaxed and comfortable. Once you are satisfied, proceed with the massage.
  4. Place an ample sized drop of baby oil in your palm. Rub your hands together with the oil to generate heat, with emphasis around the fingertips.
  5. Put a right hand across the baby’s stomach and gently run the hand down towards the groin before lifting the hand. Repeat the same motion with your other hand until you achieve a ‘water wheel’ motion. This step helps to get the oil into the skin at first contact.
  6. The next step involves putting your thumbs together on the center of the baby’s stomach and moving your hands towards the waist. Endeavor to keep your actions firm but gentle.
  7. Commence the massage proper with the ‘sun motion.’ With your left hand, locate the 7 o’ clock position with the flat of your palm and make circular rubs around the stomach. End this phase back at 7 o’ clock position.
  8. The next stage entails moving on to the ‘crescent moon motion.’ With the right hand, begin at 12 o’ clock position and move around the stomach, ending at 6 o’ clock.
  9. The next step demands creating synergy and navigating between both the ‘sun and crescent moon motions.’ With your left hand make the sun motion, while your right-hand does the moon at the same time.
  10.   Take hold of your baby’s ankles and gently bounce. This action helps to relax your baby’s stomach in colic cases.
  11. You should gently press your baby’s knees towards the stomach and hold for a count of five. Repeat severally.
  12.   To bring the massage to an end, place both palms on the baby’s stomach for a few moments. End the session with a cuddle.

Conclusion

Massages are a great way of bringing relief to babies with colic and constipation. Besides, a massage presents an opportunity for parent and baby to bond in a loving and relaxing atmosphere.

 

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