Massaged babies of depressed, adolescent mothers gained more weight, had improved sociability and soothability temperament scores, and experienced greater decreases in urinary stress hormones. They cried less and had lower stress levels.
Field T, Grizzle N, Scafidi F, Abrams S, Richarson S. Massage therapy for infants of depressed mothers. Infant Behav Dev 1996;19;109-114.
Learning the practice of infant massage by mothers may be an effective treatment for facilitating mother-infant interaction in mothers with postnatal depression. Edinburgh Postnatal Depression scores improved for the mothers who learned massage, as did their video-taped mother-baby interactions.
Onozawa k, Glover V, Adams D, Modi N, Kumar RC. Infant massage improves mother-Infant interaction for mothers with postnatal depression
Infants of depressed mothers who experienced massage therapy (compared to infants who were rocked) spent more time in active alert and active awake states, cried less, and had lower salivary cortisol levels, suggesting lower stress. The massage-therapy infants gained more weight, showed greater improvement on emotionality, sociability, and soothability temperament dimensions, and had greater decrease in urinary stress catecholamines/hormones (norepinephrine, epinephrine, and cortisol).
Field, T., Grizzle, N., Scafidi, F. Abrams, S., Richardson, S., Kuhn, C., & Schanberg, S. (1996). Massage therapy for infants of depressed mothers. Infant Behavior and Development, 19, 107-112.