Pediatric massage can provide a means of healing for children with specific health care needs, but also to help improve common childhood discomforts. Research has shown that pediatric massage can aide and enhance physiological, neurological and psychological development. Massage reduces stress hormones which can provide relief from common childhood conditions such as, asthma, nausea, constipation, headaches and growing pains. It has been shown to improve immune function – keeping those pesky colds and flus at bay. In addition, pediatric massage help kids sleep better, can enhance body image and calm behavior.
Of course, special considerations need to be made when providing nurturing touch to a child. It is important to establish rapport and trust from the very beginning. The therapist will need to be aware of visual and non-visual cues that the child gives in order to back off or continue with massage. It’s important to create child-friendly names for different forms of touch. This is something the child and therapist can do together.
If you have a private practice, you can incorporate pediatric massage as part of your offerings. You may be able to provide your services in hospitals and health care centers. In this case, you may find yourself working with children who are suffering from specific health challenges. Another option, is to make house calls. This will ensure that these children feel safe and able to truly enjoy the benefits of a relaxing massage.