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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Davis, LMT, CNMT

Bonding Through Touch: The Benefits of Infant Massage for New Fathers


Dad holds baby face to face in a park.

Becoming a new father can be overwhelming. It can be challenging to know your role in building a bond and attachment with your new baby, supporting your spouse or partner in their new role as well. This is especially true when supporting a new mother who is recovering from pregnancy and birth, and establishing a breastfeeding relationship with baby.


Often, new dads are told the following advice: "You're on diaper duty." While this is an important newborn care priority, it is often uncomfortable for baby, resulting in crying and fussing until the change is done and they can be dry, warm, and cuddled again.


Studies have shown that for new fathers, learning infant massage can be an important way to facilitate bonding and attachment between baby and dad, resulting in a warmer father-child bond that is securely attached, a dad who feels confident in his role and ability to soothe and care for his baby.


This is also true for new fathers who are fostering a baby, or are adopting an infant. Even fathers who are not helping to care for a spouse who has birthed their baby can struggle to bond with their baby. Babies who are adopted as infants, or placed into foster care need special attention to their need for nurturing touch, as they bond with and build trust and attachment to their parents.


Infant massage classes welcome all family types, structures, and backgrounds. These classes foster a supportive atmosphere to bond with your baby, learn soothing massage techniques, and learn about infant development and cues, while providing community with other new parents going through the newborn stage.



 

Photo of Samantha Davis, LMT owner of Louisville Prenatal Massage

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