This year’s February is special for me as I was chosen by one of my trusted brands, Johnson and Johnson, to be their host for the launch and celebrity influencer of their latest campaign called “So Much More.”
I say it is special because as young as I was in my teens, I was already doing projects for Pure Essentials, and have recently been part of more recent campaigns like Signatures of Love and Tanong Ni Mommy. Call me sentimental but I am in awe of how I see my partnership with J&J as having reached full circle as I turn from being Johnson’s Baby to Johnson’s Mommy. (Kung noon ay “Dalaga na siya, hindi na bata,” ngayon naman ay “Nanay na siya, hindi na basta dalaga.”)
There were even old faces that I saw at the event itself that got me nostalgic. And together with them I was glad to make new friends from different age groups, who all work together as one for J&J and all the moms who definitely need partners in raising their babies the best way they can.
I am also glad that J&J is committed to do everything to give moms helpful information and pursue campaigns that raise awareness like this one. They apparently use their resources not only to ensure the safety and efficiency of their products, but they put much into research, as well.
So Much More campaign is actually one that resulted from a research done in seven other countries and shows that not all parents view bath time as having a rather important role in the development of babies. To be specifically local, “The report revealed that while 96% of parents in the Philippines believe that bath time is so much more than just getting their child clean, 45% do not see that it is extremely important for cognitive development. This could be the reason why the Philippines has the shortest bath time duration for babies—15 minutes vs. the global average of 23 minutes.”
In the event I joked about how this probably is because of how hot it is here and therefore means 15 minutes but three or four times a day! But then I also found myself guilty of once thinking that giving babies a bath just means one thing- get them clean! Yun pala, and I realized this while listening to the experts who were invited to share at the So Much More launch, hindi lang talaga basta ligo ang ligo!
“Bath time can be so much more than getting clean. Multisensory stimulation rituals can aid in promoting happy and healthy baby development leading to specific benefits such as increased weight gain and bone mass, reduced stress, crying and better quality and quantity of sleep,” shares Dr. Didoy Castañeda, Asia Pacific Medical & Clinical Affairs Director.
Actually, some of these I already knew beforehand. Kahit wala pang stats or scientific research, I can already see how a bath ritual is key to a baby’s great sleep. When I was just beginning to teach Philip about night and day, a warm bath was one of the most powerful cues to give him, followed by gentle massage and caresses while softly humming tender songs in a dimly lit room. It never ceases to amaze me how it lulls my baby into peaceful slumber!
When it came to bath time itself, Dr.Joselyn Eusebio said something about children and how their touching leads to cognitive activity as they begin to make sense of what they just felt, which makes it good to prolong bath times so to stimulate the child’s mind to understand different things. Oo nga naman, when they hold something, they begin to think, “This is hot” or “This is cold.” We do not immediately connect it to cognitive development but even a simple sensation that can be experienced with a gush of water can lead a child to better development. Sabi ko nga science begins at home, solid, liquid, and gas were first learned within the confines of our bath and bedrooms, hindi ba?
Aside from the powerful sense of touch, smell comes next in the list of sense that brings about development when stimulated. Here’s a quick test: remember the smell of a balikbayan box? Yung bagong bukas, straight from the plane or cargo ship into your home? Hindi ba it brings memories and certain emotions?
Just the same, “Pleasant smells, particularly, when paired with the loving interactions of a parent, can create positive and lasting memories that children will remember for a lifetime. Fragranced products are known to increase infant engagement, helping mothers bond with their babies, and helping babies stay calm and relaxed for a more prolonged period of time,” adds Mr. Arun Viswanath, Asia Pacific, Science & Technology head at Givaudan Fragrances.
Kaya nga siguro some moms leave a shirt stained with their milk at home with their babies when they have to leave for work, it is because the mother’s smell is a reminder of comfort and security. I, too, have similar associations like chamomile and lavender with bedtime, as well as the scent of coffee for the mornings. This makes me see how the sense of smell is also powerful and in being so, is able to help our babies develop happily and healthily!
I think if I go on and on I will never stop writing all the things that I learned on the day of our launch. So I think it is best to stop here and say that really, So Much More as a campaign is geared towards rallying moms and dads to improve our daily and seemingly “normal” rituals like giving baby a bath by first thinking na hindi basta ligo ang ligo. I have added infographics for your reference, but more than that there are practical suggestions and applications that you may also find over here: https://www.johnsonsbaby.com/somuchmore.
I’ve always been fond of my bath times with Philip, though I thought it was primarily only for cleaning the baby. But now I find deeper understanding in this rather simple act. Like what I said at the launch, this new call to action by Johnson and Johnson may sound a bit scientific at the onset but doable and even so enjoyable and definitely affordable. Haplos lang ang puhunan, kasama ng mga produktong mapagkakatiwalaan, hindi ba? My wish is that the next time J&J makes a Global Report, our numbers would have increased much not because we were told to do so, but because we enjoyed doing so. Limited lang ang oras na mapapaliguan natin si baby, let’s make the most out of it!