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Baby Tummy Massage (help For Colic, Gas, And Constipation)

This post: baby tummy massage for constipation, colic + gas.

One of the best things you can learn as a new mommy is a how to give your baby a massage.

Science backs the claims that touch therapy benefits babies physically, as well as emotionally.

In addition to increasing bonding between an infant and parent, baby massage has been linked to

  • weight gain in low-weight infants,
  • improved motor skills,
  • better sleeping patterns
  • and healthier digestion. (source)

In this post, I want to focus on

How baby massage can help with constipation, colic and gas

I am the blessed mama of five children, and every one of my babies had tummy troubles.




Thankfully, I discovered this simple tummy massage when our first baby was an infant, and used it for each of my little ones.

This baby tummy massage is so effective for relieving discomfort caused by gas, colic, and constipation.

I want to show you a super simple way to love on your little baby and help relieve his or her tummy ache.

If your little one is suffering with tummy issues, I hope you’ll give this colic massage a try.

Here’s a simple tutorial:

#1 First, lay Baby down on his back.

The cute little guy in the collage below is my oldest son, when we was about three months old.

He sure loved getting his tummy massaged!

With the palm of your hand near the top of Baby’s rib cage, bring your hand down in a sweeping motion, gently pressing his tummy.

The point is to work any air (gas) down and out, as well as to relieve any built-up pressure.

Repeat this motion several times before going on to the next step-

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#2 Place your finger tips over Baby’s belly button area and massage gently and slowly in a clock-wise, circular motion.

Continue for 30 seconds or so.

This helps Baby pass any gas that is on his tummy.

It will also help stimulate your baby’s bowls if he is constipated.

#3 Lastly, take hold of Baby’s ankles and gently press his legs toward his chest and hold for a few seconds.

Repeat several times.

You can also “pedal” his legs (as if he’s riding a bicycle), and alternate the two motions.

I usually repeated all of the steps several times until it was obvious that my baby’s tummy was feeling better. (It usually only took a few minutes.)

Tips for Baby Massage

The only times my babies didn’t enjoy the massage was if their tummy was very gassy from crying, colic, etc, or if they were constipated.

(You can usually tell your baby is constipated by gently probing the stomach area with your finger tips, which will feel hard to the touch.)

If your baby is too upset or his tummy hurts too much to give the massage, try giving him a dose of Gripe Water first.

After giving a dose of Gripe Water, hold your baby in an upright position, as if you are trying to burp him, and gently pat his back.

The air in his tummy will usually come up or out within a few minutes and you can try the tummy massage again.

Want to learn more about baby massage benefits?

Check out the book, Infant Massage: A Handbook for Loving Parents, by Vimala McClure.

You may also be interested in:

ALSO READ:  7 Easy + Completely Natural Remedies for an Upset Stomach

Lucy Johns, a holistic therapist, created this helpful video tutorial-

These days, I’m raising three teenagers + two younger boys who are well past babyhood.

Although the babies years are behind me, I haven’t forgotten the many challenges, questions, and needs that young moms face.

I love connecting with other moms, and helping younger moms find support, encouragement and helpful resources.

->You can follow me on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest, where I share peeks into my life as a working stay-at-home-mom.

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Hit a “share” button + spread the wellness inspo! xoxo

Your Turn

Have you tried this tummy massage on your baby? Drop a comment below and tell me about it.

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  1. My baby girl is 2 weeks old and she gets cramps all the time. I feel helpless

  2. The best and perfect home remedy that worked wonder for my baby with severe colic and non-stop crying was an organic herbal tea called babies magic tea.

  3. I was always taught to make 3 lines from the bottom of the sternum down the belly, then two L across the side of the belly and across, then a U. (I I I LOVE You) then pedal. Every time we pedaled my sons legs he would fart. It still cracks me up.

    Thanks for sharing on Natural Living Monday! I hope you can share more with us this week!

  4. Thanks for sharing your wisdom, Mama! 🙂

  5. We use Gripe Water when we can’t get our little one to calm down. It truly helps him feel immediate relief. I am going to try this massage with him (almost one month!) after his next meal! Three out of our five children have been really gassy. Thank you for the great description, I’m pinning this!

      1. This may be a silly question, but is there supposed to be something floating around the bottom of the bottle of Gripe Water? I never used it for my first two, but did for the 3rd. When I couldn’t get the syringe down in the bottle well enough to get the appropriate dosage out, I poured the Gripe Water in a cup to fill my syringe. Out fell *something* from the bottle that looked like mold. I wasn’t sure what it was so I threw the whole bottle away and haven’t bought any more since. Thankfully, she hasn’t needed it, so I’ve been okay.

      2. Oh my! The only thing that I can think of that could possibly be floating around would be herbs, which definitely should NOT look like mold!!! I’ve used several different brands of gripe water, and they have each been clear tinctures with no herbs “floating around”. What brand did you use?

  6. My second baby (now 9 weeks old) seemed to be BORN gassy! I found that giving child probiotics mixed with breastmilk with an eyedropper and, later on, in a bottle, has really helped! He is definitely less fussy and gassy than he was. I also found that my overactive letdown was aggravating the gas issue, because he was swallowing so much air trying to keep up with the flow. So I now know to let some of my milk spray into a cloth before latching him back on, and that has helped also. It’s a learning process. Thanks for the massage tip–I will definitely try it next time he seems fussy from gas!

    1. Rebecca, I’m so glad you mentioned probiotics! They are a huge part of our children’s (and babies’) digestive health protocol. We’ve found Probiotics help tremedously with just about anything related to tummy issues.

      1. I was going to mention that too. I use Tummy Tune up from Beeyoutiful. I just put it on the end of a pacifier. Since I’m nursing if my babies are gassy I figure my milk must not have even probiotics in it so I try to start eating more. I just read yesterday in “Super Nutrition for Babies” that sauerkraut is really supposed to aid in digestion, so I’ve started eating some every day.

      2. What a great insight! Do you make your own sauerkraut? I’ve been considering trying my hand at making cultured vegetables.

      3. Yes I do. It’s super easy, though it was very intimidating for me to try the first time, even though I do have some very clear memories of my mom making it when I was a kid. I was thinking about doing a post on, so maybe I will make that tomorrow’s post (https://buildestablishfill.wordpress.com). BTW- I just stumbled across your blog from Deep Roots at Home. Looks like you have a nice blog. I read a little while breastfeed *grin* Blessings!c

      4. I made a batch of sauerkraut once a few months ago and it was really good! I haven’t made any more since, because life with a new baby got too busy, but I plan on trying it again soon. I also eat a lot of kefir and yogurt. Anyone have any idea if eating probiotics when breastfeeding somehow transfers through the milk to baby? :/