Why Massage Babies & Children?


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  • Please check out my critical review of the research on Infant Massage to see the many benefits to mothers who massage their infants and/or watch their infants being massaged! I also have my dissertation research on Father's who massaged their infants and the many benefits to fathers and baby! http://mkaykeller.com
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Why Massage Babies & Children?

  1. 1. The Power of Infant Massage 3 rd Annual Infant Toddler Conference March 26, 2007 M. Kay Keller, M.P.A., S.S.W., C.I.M.I.
  2. 2. Contact Information <ul><li>M. Kay Keller, MPA, SSW. PhD (abd) </li></ul><ul><li>All Family Solutions </li></ul><ul><li>http://MKayKeller.blogspot.com </li></ul><ul><li>Email: Kay@MKayKeller.com </li></ul><ul><li>(850) 264-7241 </li></ul><ul><li>International Association of Infant Massage </li></ul><ul><li>1-800-248-5432 </li></ul>
  3. 3. GOAL <ul><li>Develop basic knowledge of science based benefits of infant massage. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop an understanding of how parents, caregivers & babies benefit from I.M. in home classes. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop strategies for how you can make a difference. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Objectives <ul><li>Introduce an ecological Value of Infant Massage: </li></ul><ul><li>How does massage impact both the baby & the caregiver? </li></ul><ul><li>Why is massage important to you as educators & policy makers? </li></ul><ul><li>How can you play a role in changing the world of children? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Purpose of Infant Massage <ul><li>Infant/Child massage IS a communication process which sets an emotional dance between the parent or caregiver and the baby to continue throughout their lives. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Goal of Infant Massage Classes <ul><li>Provide bidirectional support for bonding & attachment processes </li></ul><ul><li>between </li></ul><ul><li>infants & their caregivers. </li></ul>Parent benefits Baby receives massage Baby benefits Parent massages infant
  7. 7. Cultural Perspective <ul><li>Vimala McClure – Infant Massage and the India experience </li></ul><ul><li>Dr. Tiffany Fields' Article on &quot;Touch&quot; research, comparison of the French culture and American cultures </li></ul><ul><li>Inclusion of Swedish Massage, Indian Massage and Reflexology </li></ul>
  8. 8. Benefits of Massage for Caregivers <ul><li>Encourages engagement & bonding </li></ul>Baby Mother Father Grandma Grandpa Daycare Providers Foster Parents Adoptive Parents
  9. 9. Benefits of Massage for Caregivers <ul><li>Increase parental confidence and feelings of competency </li></ul><ul><li>Increased ability to read the baby’s cues, enhanced communication </li></ul><ul><li>Promotes intimacy </li></ul><ul><li>Longer and uninterrupted sleep </li></ul><ul><li>Happier babies make for happier, relaxed and in control caregivers </li></ul><ul><li>Bidirectional physiological effects on the giver of massage </li></ul>
  10. 10. Benefits of Massage for Baby <ul><li>Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Interaction </li></ul><ul><li>Relaxation </li></ul><ul><li>Relief </li></ul><ul><li>Stimulation – includes stimulation of all the physiological systems </li></ul>
  11. 11. Engagement How Babies Engage <ul><li>Eye contact </li></ul><ul><li>Taste </li></ul><ul><li>Touch </li></ul><ul><li>Crying </li></ul><ul><li>Oxytocin & Prolactin </li></ul><ul><li>Odor </li></ul><ul><li>Entrainment (mimics the mother’s voice & movements) </li></ul>
  12. 12. Interaction Smell Non Verbal Cues Verbal Cues Intensifies Bonding Sound Eye Contact Touch Trust Intimacy Relaxation Engagement
  13. 13. Relaxation <ul><li>Tactile contact, eye contact, smell and heartbeat sounds all send soothing messages to the baby’s system </li></ul><ul><li>Increases baby’s tolerance for stress </li></ul>
  14. 14. Relief <ul><li>Helps to tone the digestive tract, helps move gas and fecal matter into the bowel for expulsion </li></ul><ul><li>Emotional stress is expressed and relieved </li></ul>
  15. 15. Stimulation <ul><li>Sensory Stimulation speeds myelination of the brain & nervous system </li></ul><ul><li>Stability of the nervous system and resistance to disease </li></ul><ul><li>Stimulates the respiratory, circulatory, and gastrointestinal systems and neurological development </li></ul>
  16. 16. Implications for Development <ul><li>Emotional Attachments </li></ul><ul><li>Boundaries </li></ul><ul><li>Communication </li></ul>
  17. 17. Emotional Attachments <ul><li>Securely bonded </li></ul><ul><li>Easy to get close to others, have no problems with mutual dependence </li></ul><ul><li>Have happy, trusting relationships; romances last the longest and end in divorce least often of the groups’ studies </li></ul><ul><li>Had close, secure relationships in infancy and were held, kissed, and cuddled </li></ul>
  18. 18. Emotional Attachments <ul><li>Anxious/ambivalent </li></ul><ul><li>Want to be close to others but they tend to attract people who are unable to be close </li></ul><ul><li>Worry about people leaving them, tend to be very jealous and have intense emotional ups and downs </li></ul><ul><li>The largest group—perhaps a reflection of the ‘don’t spoil the baby’ attitudes of the baby-boom generation </li></ul><ul><li>Were loved as infants but their caregivers were ambivalent and confused, giving them mixed messages about their worth, their safety, and the trustworthiness of the world </li></ul>
  19. 19. Emotional Attachments <ul><li>Avoidant </li></ul><ul><li>Feel uneasy when people get too close </li></ul><ul><li>Have trouble trusting or depending on others, and are afraid of intimacy </li></ul><ul><li>Tend to give the message, &quot;I love you/go away&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Were neglected in infancy, punished for &quot;bad&quot; behavior made to be independent and “strong,” and told it wasn’t nice to express emotion </li></ul>
  20. 20. Boundaries <ul><li>Asking the baby’s permission to be touched, sets an expectation for the child to expect to give permission before being touched. </li></ul><ul><li>Massage adjusts the baby's awareness of loving touch versus painful or hurting touch. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Communication <ul><li>Parenting by asking the child’s permission, responding to verbal and non-verbal cues, turns the traditional adult teaching the child, to the child teaching the adult about their wants/needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Teaching parents to read their baby’s engagement cues increases the level of connectedness between the caregiver & baby </li></ul><ul><li>Massage classes with parents provide an atmosphere in which to observe problematic engagements e.g., a lack of eye contact, response to crying or lack of engagement with the baby. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Demonstration of the Strokes Head - Engagement Chest - Emotional release Stomach - Digestive support Back - Stress release Legs – Relaxation Feet – Non threatening & Reflexology points
  23. 23. Behavioral States of the Newborn <ul><li>Quiet Sleep - Eyes are firmly closed and still, little or no motor activity and Respiration is primarily abdominal </li></ul><ul><li>Active Sleep - Eyes are closed but may move (rapid eye movements), Body activity from twitching to writhing and stretching, Facial movements include frowning, smiling, sucking, and sometimes ‘laughing’ noises </li></ul><ul><li>Drowsy - Eyes may open and close or be partially open, still and dazed </li></ul><ul><li>Quiet alert - Body and face relatively inactive, face is relaxed, eyes open and bright, observant </li></ul><ul><li>Active alert - Lots of activity, irregular respiration, cries, moans, and grunts and fussing </li></ul><ul><li>Crying - Much activity sustained crying </li></ul>
  24. 24. Infant Massage Benefits <ul><li>Infants whose parent suffers from a Mental Health condition </li></ul><ul><li>Infants whose parent suffers from a Substance Abuse condition </li></ul><ul><li>Infants exposed to Substances during pregnancy </li></ul><ul><li>Infants exposed to violence and whose parent was exposed to violence </li></ul><ul><li>Infants Orphaned in Foster Care or Adopted </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born HIV Positive </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born with Cerebral Palsy </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born with Down syndrome </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born with Spina Bifida or other congenital birth conditions </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born with Hearing Impairments </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born with Visual Impairments </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born to Teen Moms </li></ul><ul><li>Infants born Pre-Mature </li></ul><ul><li>Grandparents Raising Grandchildren </li></ul>
  25. 25. Why is massage important to you as educators & policy makers? In home I M Classes Parenting Competency Healthier & Confident Children Healthier & Stable Families Engaged Parents Increased Opportunities For Learning Engaged Children Builds Parents’ Confidence
  26. 26. How can you play a role in changing the world of children? <ul><li>Challenge your belief system. Do you support violent child rearing or nurturing parenting? </li></ul><ul><li>Support programs which seek to eliminate violence in the schools (nospank.net) & promote opportunities to learn problem solving skills. </li></ul><ul><li>Engage others in conversations to challenge their belief systems. </li></ul><ul><li>Make a leap of faith to suggest the world could be a better place for children, yours, mine, & our grandchildren! </li></ul>
  27. 27. Develop strategies for how you can make a difference. <ul><li>Encourage parents & caregivers to massage their babies & children </li></ul><ul><li>Model Nurturing yourself & others </li></ul><ul><li>Promote Infant Massage by giving gift certificates to new parents & caregivers </li></ul><ul><li>Provide opportunities for parents & caregivers to learn about the many benefits of Infant Massage </li></ul><ul><li>Ask for funding for research, training & development or contribute funding </li></ul>
  28. 28. Lessons of Small Leverage <ul><li>A small thing done many times can change one person </li></ul><ul><li>A small thing done many times by many people can change a community </li></ul><ul><li>A small thing done many times by many people in many communities can change the world </li></ul>
  29. 29. Why Infant Massage? Infant Toddler Child Family Norms Social Norms Boundaries Communication Nurturing Adolescents Nurturing Parents Engaged Communities Boundary Awareness Community Norms Relaxation Health Engaged Engaged Families Nurturing Children Nurturing Young Adults Education Public Safety Public Health Environment Respect Relationship Competency Health Safety Trust Bonded Attached Nurturing Behaviors Family Values Environmental Respect Caretaking
  30. 30. Why Infant Massage? Generational Cycle Mother Parent/ Caregiver Father Parent Caregiver Infant Toddler Child Attitudes Of Nurturing Perceptions Of Nurturing Behavior Modeling Family Norms Developmental Educational Health Social Skills Future Nurturing Caretaking
  31. 31. What’s The Alternative? Infant Family Social Norms Child Abuse Child Neglect Domestic Violence Violence & Crime Public Safety Drop Outs Bullying Workforce Development Homelessness Costs to Healthcare Juvenile Justice Learned Helplessness Victimization Addiction Sexual Abuse Abandonment Criminal Behavior Family Disruption Intergenerational Family Violence Community Norms Disrespect Isolation Behavioral Disorders Developmental Delays Mental Health Ill Health Infant Mortality ATOD Elder Abuse & Neglect Cruelty to Animals Loneliness Detachment Gangs SYNDEMICS
  32. 32. What’s the Alternative? Generational Cycle Mother Parent Father Parent Child Attitudes Perceptions Behavior Modeling Family Norms ATOD Mental Health Educational Failure Child Abuse Violence
  33. 33. At What Cost? <ul><li>Classroom Disruptions 77,760 </li></ul><ul><li>Physical hits on others 6,480 </li></ul><ul><li>Acts of Vandalism 325 </li></ul><ul><li>Hours of Instruction Disruption 360 </li></ul><ul><li>Items stolen from others 1,350 </li></ul><ul><li>Administrative hours lost 144 </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher hours lost in meetings 90 </li></ul><ul><li>Nurses office visits 1,200 </li></ul>
  34. 34. At What Cost? <ul><li>Pre Birth & Infancy $ 58,000 </li></ul><ul><li>Early Childhood Years $ 34,300 </li></ul><ul><li>Elementary School Years $ 74,100 </li></ul><ul><li>Secondary & Teen Years $ 475,700 </li></ul><ul><li>Other Adult Years $ 895,000 </li></ul><ul><li>Total Cost One Child $1,536,100 </li></ul><ul><li>Total Cost for Infant Massage </li></ul><ul><li>In Home Instruction $ 150.00 </li></ul>
  35. 35. WHY Infant Massage? <ul><li>Animals accidentally affect their environment…. </li></ul><ul><li>Human beings are the only organism on this planet that can consciously create a future environment for themselves... </li></ul><ul><li>What do you want to increase & decrease in your FUTURE? </li></ul>
  36. 36. Celebrate <ul><li>We must create the open spaces for the future </li></ul><ul><li>of all of our children for our mutual survival ! </li></ul>
  37. 37. Research References <ul><li>Bavolek, S. Developing empathy in families </li></ul><ul><li>Bavolek, S. Hardwired to connect. http://nurturingparenting.com </li></ul><ul><li>Infant Massage Research – Dr. Tiffany Fields, University of Miami Touch Institute http://www6.miami.edu/touch-research/about.htm </li></ul><ul><li>McClure, V. 1989. Infant Massage – A handbook for loving parents </li></ul><ul><li>Montagu A. 1986. Touching: The significance of the skin </li></ul><ul><li>Perlman, M. http:www.nurturingfathers.com </li></ul><ul><li>Role of experiential learning </li></ul><ul><li>SYNDEMICS, Dr. Embry, www.paxtalk.com </li></ul>
  38. 38. Reading Resources <ul><li>ACE Study – The relationship between Adverse Childhood Experiences and Adult Health </li></ul><ul><li>At A Loss For Words - How America is Failing Our Children & What We Can Do About It. Betty Bardige </li></ul><ul><li>“ The Gift of Fear” & “Protecting The Gift,” by Gavin DeBecker </li></ul><ul><li>Stalking of the Soul: Emotional Abuse – The Erosion of Identity by Marie-France Hirigoyen </li></ul><ul><li>When The Horse Dies, Get Off…and Stop Dragging it Around! By Louise Lebreen </li></ul>
  39. 39. Additional Supports Mirror Breathing Sign Language Dunstan Baby Language Age Appropriate Play Listening to Children’s Dreams Story Telling Kangaroo Care Attachment Parenting Nurturing Parenting Education Infant Massage Essential Oils Breast feeding
  40. 40. Contact Information <ul><li>M. Kay Keller, MPA, SSW. PhD (abd) </li></ul><ul><li>All Family Solutions </li></ul><ul><li>http://MKayKeller.blogspot.com </li></ul><ul><li>Email: Kay@MKayKeller.com </li></ul><ul><li>(850) 264-7241 </li></ul>