February 25, 2015
Recently, I began the process to become a Certified Infant Massage Instructor through the International Association of Infant Massage (IAIM). This is a blog about my journey and how I have seen it help children with special needs, first-hand.
“The purpose of the International Association of Infant Massage (IAIM) is to promote nurturing touch and communication through training, education and research so that parents, caregivers and children are loved, valued and respected throughout the world community.”
As both a physical therapist and occupational therapist, I became interested in infant massage as a way to sharpen my skills and offer them directly to my patients with gastrointestinal issues, muscle tone imbalances, and overall anxiety or aversion to touch. Little did I know, that I was just scratching the surface. Parents have shared the following benefits with me in our sessions:
- Increases the bond between parent and infant
- Improves sleep; babies sleep more sound for longer periods of time
- Relieves discomfort from reflux, gas, colic and constipation
- Regulates bowel movements
- Decreases anxiety and aversion to touch
- Promotes healthy touch, body awareness and security
- Enhances cognitive and motor skill development; subsequently improving participation in therapy
- Relaxes overall muscle tone and tightness
“The easiest way to learn to massage your baby is with the help of an IAIM Certified Infant Massage Instructor (CIMI). The strokes and styles of massage are easier to grasp when demonstrated by experienced instructors. Pressure, rate, rhythm, the length of the massage, respect, bonding, why babies cry, babies’ body language, relaxation and parent empowerment are some of the skills and topics you will learn.”
If you live in the Houston, Texas, area and you would like to learn infant massage, contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.