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Baby Medical Q&A, Issue #096 Healing Touch
October 01, 2014

Welcome to another edition of Baby Medical Q&A News.

Calming Touch

This post is about different methods of touch that you might find help your baby or toddler settle when distressed. The techniques I discuss are those that I have used or found to be useful and other methods described by alternative health practitioners that I find interesting and think sharing them may be helpful to you.

I want to point out at the outset that these techniques do not have evidence from medical research to back them - that's mostly because no research has been done. However, these techniques are unlikely to harm your baby. Do not delay any appropriate medical treatment for these techniques but you may find some that work for your child and that will make life a little less stressful. Hopefully, you will find a solution that feels right for you and your child.


I was lucky to recently attend a seminar on stress-relief for parents by Zansie Maye of She was talking to parents about ways to relief stress and also gave some helpful tips for what you can get your children to do to relief their stress. You can hear Zansie talk about stress busting techniques on Enwaken radio (Sept 18 2014)

One of the methods for stress-relief that Zansie spoke about was putting your hands on your forehead - what she described as 'the overwhelm position' but I have also seen it described as the 'Oh my god' position by Donna Eden, author of 'Energy Medicine' and founder of Inner Source.

Basically, you put your palms on your forehead with your fingers on the bony prominences. Alternatively, you can just place one hand across the forehead with the palm touching the forehead. This technique was first described by Dr Terence Bennett, a chiropracter, in 1930 who noted increased blood flow. It was later developed for use in stress by Dr Goerge Goodheart . The basis of it is that when you are stressed for any reason, the 'fight or flight' response is activated and that means blood is diverted away from the brain to the limb muscles - not surprising that it feels like you can't 'think straight'. By placing the hand on the forehead, blood returns to the forebrain and you can think and become clearer on what needs to be done.

So, just as you use this on yourself, you can do a similar thing with your distressed child - put your palm across the forehead of your child and hold until he or she settles. You may find that placing your other hand behind the head or on top of the head is useful as well. Donna Eden describes the effect of the hand on the back of the head as calming fear points.


I have always found that when I want to settle babies, particularly in situations where it is not feasible to pick them up (so during medical examinations or with procedures), that gently rubbing over the temple towards the back of the ear can be very calming. Recently, when reading Donna Eden's work, I realised that this movement is similar to the start of the Triple Warmer Smoothie move that is used to calm the stress meridian (triple warmer), so perhaps that explains why this technique that I've intuitively used works so well.


Another technique I find useful for babies, when they are lying flat, is just placing my hand on their chest/upper abdomen region. Donna Eden describes a similar technique (a version of the Hook Up) where the left hand is behind the baby's head and the right hand on the lower abdomen. The Hook Up is said to stablise the energy system.


You will probaby be aware that I like Carol Tuttle's work and she has some great techniques on her blog. I like a recent post she did on managing babies with colic. You can read it by clicking here.


Another technique that is great to settle children is the Spinal Flush, which is described by Donna Eden in her books and also by Carol Tuttle on her blog where she demonstrates with a video - click here. Basically, this technique energizes the body and removes toxins and stagnant energy. You sweep your open hand, palm to the body, along your child's spine from the neck down to the tailbone. This is done 3-5 times. I do this on my little grandson and he loves it.

You will notice that the first 2 techniques in the article in 4 are similar to the techniques mentioned in 1 and 2, although they are performed slightly differently. The thing is to find out what works for you and your child. I have used techniques that I have found to be useful intuitively and then found that they are used routinely by energy practitioners. You may find some techniques that work for you as well. Please feel free to share on our Facebook page. These techniques are not harmful and so it is worth trying particularly when you feel you have run out of things to try.

Please feel free to share this ezine with family and friends.

Till next time,

Dr Maud

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