Saturday, August 21, 2010

Tummy Tub Time Rivals Breastfeeding as Favorite Baby Activity!

The Tummytub can be misunderstood at first sight. My initial reaction was one of skepticism. I thought, “how could a plastic bucket be comforting to a baby”. I was intrigued enough to visit the company’s website at in order to read further. Upon reading about how the Tummytub’s tapered shape is designed to mimic the shape of the womb and how the snug fit and warm water help the baby to feel secure, I realized this was an ingeniously designed “bucket”. As a certified nurse midwife (CNM) I respect the natural wisdom of women’s bodies, especially the mother’s womb. I know that the shape of the womb and it’s placement within the musculature of the boney pelvis assists in developing the body and psyche of the fetus.Inside the womb, the baby is cradled tightly in warm fluid where she can move weightlessly spinning and stretching. The fetus is also aware of the auditory stimuli from the mother’s body, voice, and the fluid in which it lives. The Tummytub really is the closest a baby can get back to her home in the womb because it provides a similar warm, tight, water filled space where she can be with her parents and listen to the noises of the water.

When I had my third baby in May of 2010, I had not yet heard of the Tummytub. From newborn to six weeks of age I bathed my baby in a mainstream brand flat and long baby bath. As any experienced mother knows, those baths are not easy to use and babies are uncomfortable and cold the whole time. I actually felt guilty giving my newborn a bath because I could see and hear (from his constant crying) how miserable it made him. I tried my best to keep him warm, but with the spread out water surface and huge basin the water cooled very quickly. Bath time was usually a screaming flail and only done out of absolute necessity.

Thank God I discovered the Tummytub! When it arrived I was so excited to try it out that I gave my baby a second bath for the day. He was six weeks old and cried as soon as I undressed him. He was screaming as I eased his little body into the warm water. As soon as his belly hit the water he suddenly stopped crying, his eyes glazed over, and his body visibly relaxed as he entered into a state of “zen”. I called my husband and older children in to witness the baby’s bliss and they were all amazed at his reaction too. He seemed to be transported to a physiologic memory through his present experience in the warm water. Our love affair with the Tummytub has been going strong now for four months. Either my husband or I give the baby a bath in it every single day to provide our baby with the hydrotherapy he so craves. Sometimes he even maintains that “zen” or quiet alert state for 30 - 40 minutes after his bath. We have also used it to successfully eliminate gas pains or “colic”. Our baby has become so relaxed in the Tummytub that he has fallen asleep in it several times! It’s true that our baby smiles and giggles while inside the Tummytub and cries when we take him out. I can honestly say, the Tummytub rivals breast feeding as his favorite activity.

As a mother and a certified nurse midwife, I have nothing but positive things to say about our experience with the Tummytub. I highly recommend it to my clients, friends, and colleagues. I really hope it sparks a revolution in infant care products. More products should be designed to promote family comfort, peace, and bonding as was the case with the Tummytub and the 2-step stool. Bath time is no longer a stressful, back breaking chore to get through. Instead it is a healthy, warm, and loving interaction between parent and child. I am very impressed with the Tummytub and 2-step stool’s ease of use, functionality, and design which captures the wisdom of the mother’s womb; inspired by divine creation.

Jannah Alaoui, CNM, MSN Certified Nurse Midwife

San Jose, CA

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