Massage during pregnancy has gained a lot in popularity within recent years. It is now seen as a valid and useful means of reducing general pregnancy discomfort. Many people consider massage to be a luxury, but with its many benefits, it should be considered part of your basic physical fitness routine throughout your pregnancy. More and more women are finding that a weekly or monthly massage during pregnancy helps to reduce stress and promote relaxation; provides emotional support (especially for those women who are going through the experience alone); relieves muscle spasms, cramps and general aches and pains; increases circulation and thus reduces the possibility of varicose veins and swelling in the feet and legs; helps with digestion and reduces the likelihood of stretch marks. Pregnancy massage can help manage common musculoskeletal complaints and other symptoms. This can include helping to resolve “weak spots” such as old injuries, helping to manage posture related dysfunction, preparing clients body for labour by assisting in helping the body to be in top physical condition.
Pregnancy massage can provide an opportunity for women to completely stop what they are doing and focus on the pleasure of having someone else do something just for them.
It can improve sleep due to feeling less muscle tension and generally less uncomfortable.
Labour and Delivery
Massage can also be useful for labor. Techniques can be done by your partner or a doula or massage therapist. The time to learn the techniques is while you are pregnant before you go into labor. It is a great idea to take your partner or friend with you when you get your massage, any professional therapist will encourage this, they can show your partner many comfort measures he or she can use at home and will also explain why some techniques are unsafe. These hints will really help out when you are in labour!
Many massage therapists will have the opportunity to assist a woman in labour and for some it is a regular part of their practice. Special techniques can be used to induce and bring on labour and has a long established history. Massage therapists also play a secondary role to the woman’s personal support person, usually the father being the support person, but not always. It’s important to help him stay engaged in the process by showing him techniques that will keep him physically get close to his partner. Massage therapists may show the partners some massage techniques to help relieve pain. It is a good, practical way, of helping partners feel they are contributing.
The work of massage therapists through labour generally consists of back massage, pressure to the back to relieve discomfort, supporting the abdomen during contractions massage to various parts of the body for relaxation, distraction and pain relief.
One of the most important roles of massage therapists through labour is that of helping the mother to relax. In general, women find that touch and massage helps them better cope with their labour and creates a more satisfying experience. Most women will say that massage helps decrease the pain they experience.
Reduce stress, general pregnancy discomfort and feel relaxed. Contact us today and treat yourself to a pregnancy massage.
Post Pregnancy Massage
Post Pregnancy massage is designed to help restore the body to its pre-pregnant condition. It also addresses the stress of carrying and caring for a newborn. It can speed the recovery by bringing relief of sore muscles and help the mother to relax more easily. Massage therapy plays an important part in the restoration of the abdominal muscle wall and the uterus to its normal state. It may be given as early as 24 hours after delivery in a vaginal delivery but only with written permission from your doctor or midwife. It helps to realign the body weight to its original distribution, and tones the over-stretched areas of skin over the belly. As with all massages, it relieves muscle tension and stress from everyday activities, especially new mothering duties. It not only helps restore the physical body to the new mom, but also helps to revive her emotional state. No matter where you are in the childbearing year, massage may have many benefits for you and your baby.
When to avoid having a pregnancy massage:
- If your midwife or doctor have advised you against it.
- If you are in a high risk pregnancy category or have previously had a premature labour.
- If you have a blood clot or blood clotting disorder.
- If you have Pregnancy Induced Hypertension e.g. high blood pressure.
- If you have placental dysfunctions.
- If you have pre-eclampsia, or sudden swelling with retention of fluid.
- If you experience severe headaches.