Photo: Peaceful Touch®
Aim: To evaluate the effects of massage in 4- to 5-year-old children with aggression and deviant behaviour at day-care centres.
Method: The children received daily massage in preschool at the midday rest (n = 60). The controlswere listening to a story (n = 50). The Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL) was used to rate thechildren’s behaviour by parents and staff before the treatment started, and after 3 and 6 months. Along-term evaluation was also carried out. It included all massaged children still in daycare after12 months (n = 34).
Results: Children with high scores of behaviour problems, receiving massage and/or extra attentionshowed signiﬁcant decrease in aggression scores after 3 months, but after 6 months signiﬁcantlylowered scores were only found in massage-treated deviant children. Parents of the children receivingmassage rated a signiﬁcant decrease of somatic problems of their children. Staff rated that themassaged children’s social problems decreased, compared to the control children. Attention problems tended to decrease, especially at home. A continuous decrease in aggressive behaviourand somatic problems over a 12-month period was observed in the children receiving massage.
Conclusion: Daily touching by massage lasting for 5–10 min could be an easy and inexpensive way to decreaseaggression among preschool children.
source: Acta Paediatrica