Author(s): Lindrea KB, Stainton MC
Abstract Share this page
Abstract This article describes a case study of infant massage for a neonate in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Infant massage is grounded in the theory of touch. In an NICU, the infant's tactile experiences can be uncomfortable or painful. This can lead to touch aversion. It is possible that providing pleasurable touch experiences through infant massage can help to develop touch acceptance. It is important to first assess the infant's readiness for massage according to his or her need and response. Infant massage as a complementary therapy in the NICU is demonstrated here in a photo-study of "Nicholas." The initial uncertainty and gradual acceptance by Nicholas of the massage experience is clearly depicted. At the end of the massage, Nicholas was relaxed and asleep in a semi-fetal position. The behavioral change in this infant indicates that he made a transition from touch aversion to touch acceptance.
This article was published in MCN Am J Matern Child Nurs
and referenced in Journal of Neonatal Biology