Feel good hormone:
Massage stimulates the release of the body’s natural feel-good chemical, oxytocin. This helps mum and baby form a close bond, making eye contact and communicating to baby can become easier. The close contact helps mum become more aware of baby’s needs and baby starts to respond to this. Mum will feel more empowered and able to pick up on the baby’s cues, daily interaction becomes manageable as the loving bond develops.
Regular baby massage helps get the circadian rhythms on track, this means they will be more active in the day and sleep more at night. Readiness for sleep reflects a baby’s circadian rhythm. A massage helps baby get into the rhythm of being awake in the day and sleeping at night. Babies who often have massages have higher levels of melatonin in their bodies, this helps control the awake and sleep cycles.
Constipation can start a cycle of colicky pain. Massaging the tummy and moving their legs will make the stomach muscles move and this puts gentle pressure on the intestines, this increases their muscular activity and helps them squeeze through their waste. Its best used preventatively for colic and constipation. If baby is in pain its best to wait for a calmer time to do the massage.
Massage promotes a feeling of being cared for, a sense of security and being valued. It's a great way for fathers to build a bond and spend time together too.
On top of those great reasons it's also really nice to be close to baby using skin to skin contact and to see baby's reaction to getting all your attention, they love it!