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Oils - new study of sunflower oil and neonates

Don’t panic!
The latest research into natural oils and baby massage now seems to suggest that sunflower oil may disrupt the skin barrier.

However, there are five key points you should know:
• The experiments were done using neonates and ended before they reached five weeks of age, after which their skin tissues would have developed more
• Sunflower oil was found to hydrate the skin successfully
•The benefits of massaging babies may outweigh inconclusive evidence about natural oils
• Massaging babies without oil is not conducive to a positive experience
• Commercial baby oils, which are mineral oils, do not appear to have been tested in recent years. We know that they contain many additives including synthetic perfumes and preservatives which certainly can cause reactions on babies skin

Please do read the research paper, which can be downloanded here, and let me know if you have other thoughts or information on this topic.



Compact in-house course announced

In response to demand from local authorities, NHS Trusts and Children's Centres, Massage for Babies has introduced a three day in-house baby massage teacher training course where the training days are consecutive. Full information is available by email.


Baby Massage works for Children's Centres

A Government-funded report shows that baby massage courses are among the most successful programmes that Children's Centres can provide to support families.

‘While these programmes were not backed by randomised trials, they were found to be less expensive to deliver and were able to reach greater numbers.’ says the Oxford Universty team that analysed the work of 121 Children's Centres in England.

The full report and a summary, "Evaluation of Children’s Centres in England (ECCE)", are published by the Dept for Education.


MPs promote early attachment measures

There has been a call for a holistic preventative approach to ensure babies are given the care they need in the first two years of their lives and it is at the heart of a manifesto launched by a cross-party group of MPs. This includes an MP from the Conservatives, the LIberal Democrats, Labour and the Green Party.

The manifesto says at-risk families should be able to access evidence-based services that promote parent-infant interaction.

To do this it recommends that more early intervention services for babies should be evaluated to prove their effectiveness, including a scientific evaluation of parent-infant psychotherapy.

The manifesto includes the call for childminders and early years settings caring for under-twos to focus on the attachment needs of babies and infants,

A joint study by the Department for Education and the WAVE trust says that the first two years of life are a crucial period of human development and require more focused attention.

The report identifies the economic benefits of supporting parents and their infants and helping them to build strong relationships. Apparently this could save large amounts of money which are now being spent trying to deal with problems further up the line with adolescents who haven't benefitted from this vital early intervention.







Mother with baby
“I wanted to massage my first child but, even though I was a massage therapist, I lacked the confidence to try it”

Sally Cranfield, Principal Tutor