Baby Massage and Postnatal Depression

When women and couples embark on the journey of parenthood very few would anticipate that depression would become part of their lives, but for around 15-20% of women and 10% of men it is a reality.

A women’s mental and physical wellbeing are affected as a result of postnatal depression. She is often trying to manage her anxiety, stress and sadness along with poor sleep and disturbance in appetite. The flow on is often a loss of confidence, low self-esteem and feelings of isolation. Partners also often struggle as they are coming to terms with their role as a parent as well as trying to understand and support the baby’s mother.

Managing Postnatal Depression

There is no single way to manage postnatal depression, management is multi-pronged. The most important and often most difficult step is an early diagnosis. Mothers are under enormous pressure to keep up the appearance of coping so when things are not going as anticipated they are often reluctant to speak up.

If you are feeling you are not coping it is so important to seek help or if you are seeing another mother who is sad or anxious reach out to her. You may turn out to be the lifeline she so desperately needs.

Massage can Decrease Stress and Help to Bond with Your Child

Early diagnosis, practical and emotional support, counselling and sometimes medication are all important elements in recovering from postnatal depression, baby massage can also have a major contributing factor.

Massage will help improve a baby’s sleep and also reduce crying time which is an enormous benefit to an exhausted Mum.  The actual massaging of the baby can decrease her own levels of the stress hormone cortisol and increase the level of oxytocin which enhances bonding and supports her to become more confident and comfortable handling her baby and reading their cues and body language.

Don’t underestimate the power of positive touch.

For further information and support

Parenting, Family, Children and Youth Support | Ngala

PANDA | Support that’s always there, for you and your family