One of the key challenges you’ll meet as a parent in the early days, is learning to take care of your cranky baby. Most newborns fall ill at least once in their first couple of months which can be a specifically stressful period for the parents. After all, you can’t communicate with your little one which will leave you feeling helpless and frustrated. But did you know that massaging certain pressure points can help calm your little one when they are unwell? Babies are sensitive to touch, especially reflexology (1), which is a gentle stimulation of pressure points located on the feet. Consult your pediatrician to find out if a little massage will alleviate your baby’s discomfort. This can also be a great addition to their daily routine in order to keep them happy and healthy.
Here are 7 instances when a little foot massage can save the day:
Let’s start from the top! Teething can cause some discomfort to your baby. As the process continues they might even experience pain and could get a mild fever as a result. But before things escalate, there is a simple way to nip it in the bud. Gently massage the top of your baby’s toes to soothe the pain (2). Points that correspond to the teeth and the upper and lower jaws are located below the toe knuckles. So, applying a little pressure to your baby’s toes is a quick remedy to alleviate teething pain.
2) Runny Nose
If your baby has got the sniffles, massaging your baby’s foot is one way to make them go away faster. There is a main point on their feet that corresponds directly to their sinuses. It is located right at the tip of their big toe pads (3). Gently massage this spot to help your baby get rid of any symptoms of a cold or lingering sinus pain.
3) Chest Pain
Many babies are susceptible to chest congestions, especially in the cold winter months. This can leave them feeling stuffy and agitated. Massaging your little one at a spot directly below their three middle toes might help them feel better (4). Try pressing it with the pads of your thumb and massaging it up and down. Or simply wrap your fingers around your baby’s foot and press down on the area with your thumb in short, regular intervals.
4) Upset Stomach
All babies get a stomach bug or an upset stomach once in a while. This is especially true when you first start the transition from milk to solid foods. Your baby’s digestive system may have a hard time adjusting to all the new ingredients. Or maybe some foods just aren’t suited to your baby. For example, many babies are lactose or gluten intolerant. To alleviate the tummy ache massage the middle portion of your baby’s foot. The center of the foot corresponds with the stomach so it should help with the spasms and pain (5).
Like we mentioned earlier, massaging your baby’s foot can help sort out any digestive issues they may be facing. However, the point corresponding to the intestines is located below the previous point. This point is located four fingers below your baby’s big toe and massaging it lightly can help relieve indigestion, stomach aches and nausea (6).
6) Gas Pain
Indigestion can also lead to feeling gassy. This can cause discomfort and pain to your little one. Massaging your baby’s feet is a great option if this is the case. Simply stimulate the point located between the big toe and the second toe. This can relieve nausea, bloating, gassiness and vomiting (7). It’s a great trick for a quick fix but if your baby’s symptoms get worse, we suggest you consult your pediatrician.
With all the changes in texture, consistency and nutrients in your baby’s diet, they are bound to get constipated now and again. All babies experience it at one point or another and they are not happy about it. Feeling constipated is never a good feeling. You feel bloated and heavy. And your baby may also experience pain and discomfort. But is there an efficient way to relieve this? Several studies show that gently massaging the heel of your baby’s foot can help relieve constipation and a sore stomach (8). The heels of the feet are linked to the stomach and can naturally help curb health problems like constipation (9).
Finding ways to help your little baby while they are unwell or uncomfortable can be tricky. But reflexology is one method that can actually help them calm down and get some relief for the pain they might be experiencing. So, would you try these little massages on your baby? Let us know in the comments section!