Mustard oil has been a quintessential oil used by Indian families since ages. The tradition of massaging baby with mustard oil has been passed down from generation to generation. Indian grandmothers and mothers swear by benefits of mustard oil for the baby’s physical growth and development.
12 Benefits Of Massaging Baby With Mustard Oil
Using mustard oil on your baby may sound like a bad idea at first. It has a pungent smell and a sticky consistency which makes you hesitate before applying it to your baby’s skin. However, these properties are some of the reasons why mustard oil is a therapeutic solution for your baby. Massaging baby with mustard oil has a host of benefits and many mothers swear by its benefits.
By the end of the article, you will get to know why mustard oil is ideal for your baby. If you are still pondering on whether or not to use mustard oil for massaging baby, here are 12 benefits of massaging baby with mustard oil.
1. Improves blood circulation
During the early days, newborns are still developing their motor skills. They have nearly no physical activity. Lack of physical activity can have an impact on the blood circulation in your baby’s body.
Mustard oil is known to increase blood circulation in the baby’s body. Increased blood flow in the body helps to increase the growth and development of your infant. When a mother uses soft strokes to massage the baby’s body, it also acts as a bonding exercise for both the mother and baby.
2. Mustard oil massage aids in storing body heat
Babies are not able to regulate their own body temperature. Hence, changes in the weather or even the room temperature can suddenly cool or overheat their body.
Mustard oil is highly effective in retaining your baby’s body heat. It creates a protective layer that acts as an insulator for your baby. As an oil, mustard oil is very thick in nature. It takes a longer time to get absorbed in the body which helps in keeping your baby warm for a longer period of time. Parents in colder regions swear by mustard oil to keep their baby warm.
3. Mustard oil massage and scalp related problems
Most babies are born with scanty hair. Mothers worry about their baby’s hair growth. This is one of the reasons why parents shave off their baby’s head. Many babies also suffer from a problem called a cradle cap. A cradle cap causes dry and oily patches on the head of the baby.
Another great benefit of mustard oil is that it acts as a stimulant for hair growth. It heals the dry scalp and acts as a moisturizer for the scalp. A regular massage with lukewarm mustard oil helps in keeping your baby’s scalp healthy and moisturized.
4. Relieves sin infections
Babies have sensitive skin, which makes them prone to getting skin infections and allergies easily. One such example is diaper rash. The friction of the diaper with your baby’s skin irritates your baby’s skin, causing redness and allergies. Many newborns are also born with dry and flaky skin which takes time to heal.
In such instances, mustard oil helps in relieving skin related infections for babies. Its anti-fungal properties help in healing the skin in a gentle and herbal way. Applying mustard oil on the infected area will help to keep skin infections at bay.
5. Mustard oil works as a decongestant
Babies tend to catch colds easily, especially during the rainy and winter seasons. Mustard oil helps in relieving cold and congestion in your baby.
Warm mustard oil for massaging baby mixed with one clove of garlic and ajwain seeds till the mixture turns black. Cool the mixture down till its lukewarm and apply it on your baby’s chest. Make sure that you strain the mixture well before massaging your baby.
This mixture will create an extra layer of heat in your baby’s body which will help in relieving cold and congestion. Apply this mixture on a daily basis till your baby’s congestion hasn’t cleared out completely.
6. Mustard oil works as a mosquito repellent
Mothers keep worrying about the red mosquito bites on their baby’s body. Using mosquito repellent creams can be harmful to your baby’s skin as they contain many harmful chemicals in them. In addition to the several benefits of mustard oil, it is also a natural mosquito repellent.
Mustard oil has a strong and pungent smell which helps in keeping mosquitos at bay. It has been used from ages to ward off bugs and mosquitoes hovering over babies. Using mustard oil for massaging baby can help in creating a protective layer that repels mosquitoes and other insects.
7. Strengthens immune system
During the initial years, babies are born with weak immune systems. A slight change in weather can make them fall sick. Using mustard oil for baby massage helps in building a protective shield for your baby. This protective shield helps them in fighting infections easily and ensuring a faster recovery.
Using mustard oil on the baby’s chest, back, and soles of the feet help in keeping them warm for longer so that they don’t catch infections such as colds, coughs, fever, etc. Mustard oil massage is often recommended in winters to protect babies from cold.
8. Strengthens bones
Babes are born with soft bones, which is why doctors advise parents to be careful while holding the baby. Mustard oil has properties that can help in developing your baby’s muscles and gain bone strength. Massaging your baby’s joints helps them get additional strength and agility, which also helps them develop their motor skills faster.
9. Mustard oil has anti-bacterial properties
Mustard oil is also powerful enough to protect your baby’s body from bacteria and bacteria causing diseases. It has anti-bacterial properties which kill harmful bacteria like S Typhi and E coli. These bacteria are known to trigger many prominent illnesses in human beings and are hard to kill.
10. Massaging baby with mustard helps with asthma
Respiratory problems like asthma can be relieved with mustard oil massages. In order to use mustard oil for treating asthma, mix mustard oil with some camphor and put it on heat. Cool the mixture down till its lukewarm. Massage this mixture on your baby’s chest. This mixture will help in opening up blockages in your baby’s respiratory tract.
11. Opens sweat pores
It is very important to allow your baby’s skin to breathe. Clogged pores can cause fluctuations in your baby’s body temperature. Mustard oil helps in giving warmth to your baby’s body which helps in opening up its sweat pores. Open pores help the skin to breathe and sweat, which also helps in releasing toxins from your baby’s body.
12. Ready for use
One of the benefits of using mustard oil is that it is easily available. During winters, coconut oil gets frozen, making it a hassle for parents to use it during the winter. Due to its warming properties, mustard oil doesn’t get frozen. Parents can use it easily to massage their baby’s body.
From cooking, lighting diyas, to massaging babies, mustard oil holds great prominence in Indian households. The reason why mustard oil is traditionally used in India is because of its therapeutic properties. Its anti-bacterial and anti-bacterial properties create a protective layer for babies. According to a study, “Mustard oil was the most common (99.7%) oil used for massage in Indian households. The massage is usually started within 12 hours of birth by grandmother or any other elderly lady of the house.”
One of the major properties of mustard oil is that it gives a warming effect on your baby’s body. If you live in a hot or warm area, it is advised that you refrain from using mustard oil for massaging in summers. Using mustard oil for baby massage during summer can make them feel uncomfortable instead of making them feel relaxed. Hence, use a lighter oil like coconut oil during summer.
The effect of mustard oil on your baby’s skin tone depends on the skin type of your baby. There isn’t enough evidence that suggests that mustard oil darkens the skin tone of your baby. However, if you are using mustard oil on your baby’s skin, make sure that you clean it off properly during baths. This will prevent any dirt particles from getting stuck to your baby’s skin.
Some good brands of mustard oil for baby massage include Dabur and Mamaearth. Their oils are infused to protect your baby’s sensitive skin and promote growth and development in your baby.
There’s no reason why you shouldn’t try mustard oil for your baby’s massage. Massage your baby regularly with mustard oil for more effective results. Make sure that you are applying natural and chemical-free mustard oil on your baby’s skin.