Pregnancy brings numerous changes to a woman’s body. These physical changes can cause pain, discomfort, and stress to the expecting mother. During pregnancy women can experience back pain, swollen ankles, shifting pelvic bones and more. Prenatal massage is a great way to help alleviate any discomforts or pain caused during pregnancy.
In this article we will discuss prenatal massage therapy and how often you should get one.
What is prenatal massage?
A prenatal massage is a full body massage for pregnant women performed by a certified prenatal massage therapist. This type of massage helps pregnant women deal with the pain and discomfort experienced during pregnancy. It also reduces any stress or anxiety that women may go through and provides relaxation and comfort.
Before getting a prenatal massage, women should always discuss with their doctor and prenatal care provider about their health and if it is safe for them to get any type of massage. For example, certain conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure or morning sickness can make massage risky. It is always a good idea to get a green signal from your healthcare provider.
Also, it is important that you seek a certified prenatal massage therapist. These therapists understand the anatomy of a pregnant woman and know what is safe for the mother and her baby. Prenatal massage therapists know which position is safe for the mother with different stages of pregnancy. For example, after the fourth month of the pregnancy it is not safe for a woman to lie on her back during massage as the weight of the baby and uterus can compress blood vessels. This can lead to reduced circulation to placenta causing more issues.
Hence, always ensure that you see a certified prenatal therapist who understands the body of a pregnant woman and knows how to take the proper safety measures during the massage.
Benefits if Prenatal Massage
Massage can help alleviate pain and reduce stress. This is a good way to promote relaxation and improve blood circulation. It can help a pregnant woman throughout pregnancy and promote overall health.
Here are some benefits of prenatal massage therapy:
· Reduces swelling
· Improved sleep
· Relieves lower back pain
· Reduces stress and anxiety
· Increased levels of Serotonin and Dopamine
· Prepares the body for labor and birth
· Natural pain relief
How often should you get a prenatal massage?
Prenatal massages are generally considered safe after the first trimester. Prenatal therapy can benefit a woman throughout the pregnancy. However, massage during the first three months can trigger dizziness and add to morning sickness. Generally pregnant women can go for therapy once a month until 27 weeks and then twice up to 36 weeks. After that it is recommended to have weekly appointments till birth.
As discussed above it is important to first seek consultation from the doctor and a certified prenatal therapist to understand your specific needs. A certified prenatal therapist can recommend when you can get your massages and adapt the therapy according to your specific needs.
What to expect during a prenatal massage?
A prenatal massage session can be at least 60 minutes and can go up to 90 minutes. The room will be quiet and will have a comfortable temperature for the expecting mother. The massage therapist will ensure that they provide a safe and comfortable environment during massage to promote relaxation.
A certified prenatal therapist will have complete knowledge about the anatomy of a pregnant woman and will recommend the correct position in which to conduct a massage. Some therapists may use aromatherapy oils during a massage session. Some essential oils may not be safe for pregnant women. Also, many pregnant women experience aversion to essential oils. You can discuss this with your therapist before your sessions.
Pregnancy can be tough on the bodies of expecting mothers. Massage is a great way to help the body adapt to the mental and physical changes happening during pregnancy. Along with promoting overall health during pregnancy, massage therapy can also prepare the mother for birth. A pregnant woman may go through a lot during pregnancy, massage therapy can help her cope and make the process more enjoyable.
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