The Perinatal community mental health team came together in June 2017. We are a service that supports Mothers and their babies from conception up until the baby is 12 months old. The team supports mothers and their babies with issues regarding bonding and attachment, we all agreed as a team to have staff that are accredited trainers in Infant massage was a must, as reading evidence around how this can help improve relationships between mother and baby.
When looking into which training would be best we found that IAIM were far the best in how to train and teach individuals in delivering the course to a wide range of families.
My colleague and I commenced a four day training course run by Kate Pigeon-Owen, this was informative and touched on all the points we were looking for regarding bonding and attachment and many more.
We learnt how to use infant massage in a wide range of contexts from Neonatal to SEN and how it can be used not just for babies but right up to teenage years, using different techniques adapted for the age.
The training also entailed us learning the strokes and applying them within a real group setting with parents and babies being invited to be a part of our training, this was helpful in helping us understand how to facilitate the group, but also to see the benefits of what the parents and babies get out of the group.
The other part of the training was to facilitate our own group consisting of a five week course with a minimum of five mothers who use our service, this really helped build my confidence in delivering the course, and how we can develop it into our everyday practise.
It was a positive experience watching the mothers who came to the group, develop their confidence and bond with baby, and to make new relationships with the other mothers, making it a safe space for them to take part in the discussion part of the session which they lead and we oversee, encouraging mothers to share experiences and learn off each other.
It was also a really nice experience to watch as the facilitator, the babies enjoying the strokes, and the positive interaction that developed between mother and baby.
We had lots of a positive feedback from the mothers that attended the sessions, and they said they had noticed some differences in their baby, when carrying out the massage at home, they were able to notice that some babies enjoyed a particular part of the body being massaged than others and that they were able to recognise baby’s cues and stop if baby wasn’t happy anymore.
As a professional we will use the skills we have acquired to run groups in the local community for mothers who use our service but to also carry out one to one sessions with mothers who may struggle in social situations and teach them in their own homes.
This is a valuable and highly skilled training course and is going to be greatly appreciated and welcomed from the mothers who experience difficulties in the first few weeks after birth, regarding attachment it will help improve maternal bonding outcomes and greatly improve the mother’s confidence in looking after her baby.
Quote 1- “Was very friendly and learnt lots from the instructor, he now calms easier for bedtime routine”
Quote 2- “Owen loves to have his hands massaged, you can see him calm down, I enjoyed all the sessions the time to sit and chat after was lovely”
Perinatal Community Nursery Nurse