Benefits of abhyanga for baby:
- The practice of oiling and giving a massage to baby before a bath is indigenous not just to India, but to several ancient cultures. Oiling forms an important part of the Indian tradition of Abhyanga which I keep writing about. The first section of the Charaka Samhita is called “Sutrasthana” or “Fundamentals” and has a chapter dedicated to the diet and dinacharya which also contains several stanzas on the benefits of abhyanga for the head, body and pada / feet.
- The branch of Ayurveda dealing with Pediatrics is called “Kaumarabhritya” . The Ashtanga hridaya written by acharya Vagbhatta describes in detail the care of a baby immediately after child birth. Some of the samskaras described immediately after child birth are ulva parimarjana (cleaning of the vernix), naal chhedan (cutting of the umbilical cord), snana (bathing), pichu dharan (external oil application), etc. Just like an abhyanga is advocated for adults for good health, an abhyanga is prescribed for baby as well. Traditional dais and nurses are employed to give baby an abhyanga paying special attention to the fontanelle, and limbs to encourage healing, growth, correct small deformities and give the baby good health, good appetite and sound sleep.
- For bathing of baby, Acharya Vagbhatta suggests using a decoction of herbs which have antiseptic properties and a pleasant, natural smell. Oral and cultural tradition in different parts of India also suggest a mixture of herbs for baby care depending upon climate and season.
- Several herbs are documented in the texts for use for a baby. Childhood is considered as high in kapha as kapha provides the necessary raw material for bone, muscle and development of the dhatus for children. But this high kapha also means that children are vulnerable to kapha dosa vitiation (respiratory illnesses and illnesses that involve the accumulation of mucous and phlegm). Therefore all ayurvedic churanas, lepas and tailams for baby are usually made with a higher emphasis on warming and bitter herbs. Warmth and bitterness is the opposite of kapha and will help dissolve excess kapha.
How the Krya Nourishing Baby massage oil with Palmarosa & Rose is made:
- The Krya Nourishing Baby Massage Oil with Palmarosa & Rose is made using a classical 3-part Ayurvedic method combining Taila ( oil ) , Kashayam ( Aqueous Extract ) and Kalpa ( paste) .This is a method unique to Indian traditional medicine, where the nutrients inside herbs are extracted in both water and oil - this ensures that every part of the herb is extracted into the oil, giving you an oil which is both powerful and "sookshma" (capable of penetrating even the minute cells). This process alone takes us between 6 - 8 hours of constant manual stirring to ensure the oil mainatins a perfect consistency and the herbs do not get burned.
- After processing the base oil and base herbs, we further add raw, cold pressed ,organic oils and more herbs to infuse their properties into the oil. This second set of herbs added are usually delicate herbs like flowers and highly aromatic leaves which cannot tolerate high temperature. This cold infusion process takes us a further 7 days as we allow the nutrients from the first and the second set of herbs to fully be transferred into the oils. So every batch of this oil takes us 8 days to manufacture.
- At the end of the hot processing and the cold infusion process, the texture of the oil changes and the oil is extremely dfferent from its basic nature - so even though heavy oils like sesame and coconut are used, the end oil is much lighter, less sticky and penetrates hair and scalp much faster than the base oil.
What goes into the Krya Nourishing Baby massage oil with Palmarosa & Rose :
- Herb Infused Oil 1 - Organic Moringa, Forest collected Lodhra, Organic Durva, Forest collected Liquorice, Organic Rosemary processed in cold-pressed, organic coconut and cold-pressed organic apricot oil
- Herb Infused Oil 2 - Organic Palmarosa & Organic rose petals infused in cold-processed, organic coconut & cold-pressed, organic apricot oil
- The Krya nourishing baby massage oil with Palmarosa & Rose is designed as a daily, pre-bath moisturizing product.
- Using the oil warm helps it penetrate your child's skin faster, reduces mucous build-up and is very soothing and relaxing for the baby. Do not warm this oil directly as it will deplete the delicate natural fragrances and natural volatile oils from the herbs in the product. Warm in the bain-marie method, by putting the product in a stainless steel (plastic and aluminium free) container and putting this in a larger container with hot water. Test the temperature before applying the oil on baby - baby's skin is much more heat sensitive compared to adult skin so apply only warm - luke warm oil on your child's skin.
- Apply generously all over baby's body and gently massage into skin. Pay gentle attention to the limbs, and joints. Do not pull or elongate any part of the baby. Be as gentle as possible. After oiling, wrap the baby warmly until you are ready to bathe her. Do not expose her to any wind or draughts during the time. Oiling is best done in a closed room with the fan switched off.
- Bathe the baby with a natural, soap free grain based cleanser. SLS, SLeS and other Sulphate based synthetic cleansers are extremely drying on skin and strip baby's skin of its oil content. These cleasners also alter the natural pH of skin eaving it very fragile and prone to microbial contamination.