Is swinging and shaking a baby during baby massage safe?

Some believe it's soothing, while others would argue that it is dangerous. What do you think?

It’s enough to make any parent cringe. In a clip that has been going viral online a baby is seen dangling by its arms, being swung from side to side. Later on in the clip, the baby is even swung upside down! The woman performing this seemingly dangerous baby massage is a 35-year-old professional masseuse named Larissa Orynbasarovna. 

Though it might be shocking for some parents to behold, it’s actually not that unusual in Orynbasarovna’s home country of Kazakhstan. 

'Dangerous' Baby Massage Goes Viral Online 

It's easy to worry about the baby being "massaged" in the video. Because the process looks anything but soothing or safe for babies. But Orynbasarovna, who's had years of practice as a masseuse, is confident that her methods are safe. 

She begins by swinging the baby side to side while holding him by the ankles. 

Then with one arm, she pulls his torso towards her and she then props the baby in the crook of her elbows and then flips the baby upside down and upright again while holding his hands. Then she flings him up and down and then side to side again. She even holds the baby by the neck as she swings him! Then, she repeats the same process all over again. 

Naturally, the video has shocked many internet users. It's no secret that a baby's developing body and bones are still fragile; they should be handled with care. 

What Counts as Dangerous Baby Massage? Tips for Mums and Dads

dangerous baby massage To avoid dangerous baby massage, use gentle, long strokes when giving your baby a soothing massage. | Image source: Shutterstock

Some would say a dangerous baby massage would be right after a baby eats. This is because a full baby is prone to vomiting. But many would agree that handling a baby this way, without proper training, could put them at risk.

The National Childbirth Trust emphasises that a good baby massage is done with gentle caresses and a small amount of baby oil. Use slow, smooth strokes, with little pressure! Make sure your baby is well-supported and comfortable. You can use your fingertips or palms, but make sure that you do it gently!

Massaging your baby has a number of benefits. First, it encourages bonding and interaction between parent and baby. Massaging can help soothe, relax, relieve stress, and put them to sleep. It can help reduce irritability and carrying. 

Be sure to consult your baby's paediatrician before doing baby massage to make sure your baby has no underlying health issues. On average, though, newborns can be massaged daily, while toddlers can benefit from a massage at bedtime to help them sleep. 

 

Sources: Independent UK, Mayo Clinic, National Childbirth Trust

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