Massage therapy during pregnancy is a wonderful complementary choice for prenatal care. It is a healthy way to reduce stress and promote overall wellness. Massage relieves many of the normal discomforts experienced during pregnancy, such as backaches, stiff neck, leg cramps, headaches and edema (or swelling).
In addition, massage for pregnant women reduces stress on weight-bearing joints, encourages blood and lymph circulation, helps to relax nervous tension - which aids in better sleep - and can help relieve depression or anxiety caused by hormonal changes.
During the Prenatal Massage
During your Prenatal Massage your therapist will ensure you are comfortable. Sideline positioning with supportive, soft cushions is used to alleviate the extra strain on the lower back and pelvic areas when the pressure of massage techniques are applied. Extra strain in these areas can cause unnecessary back or abdominal pain, so naturally we want to avoid any potential discomfort.
Through the second trimester, you may prefer to lie on your back with a small, cushioned wedge placed under one hip to provide a slight elevation. Depending on where you are in your pregnancy, your therapist may utilize such massage techniques as reflexology, Swedish massage or certain techniques that address your specific requests and needs.
Relief of Everyday Symptoms
Massage for pregnant women offers a number of benefits, and it's always a good idea to discuss with your therapist any everyday symptoms you'd like to see relieved. Those might include:
While a massage can't promise that your newborn will sleep through the night, it can provide you with a better night's sleep both during pregnancy and afterwards. Regular massage therapy not only helps diminish anxiety and discomfort but boosts relaxation as well. This ultimately can lead to improved sleep patterns.
In addition, the serotonin, endorphins and dopamine released by your body in response to massage provide an extra helping of those natural chemicals. "Massage is very effective at increasing deep sleep," says Touch Research Institute director Dr. Tiffany Field.
Women with normal, low-risk pregnancies can benefit greatly from the variety of massage techniques offered here at Nice to be Kneaded. However, women in high-risk pregnancies should consult their doctor or midwife before beginning a massage therapy program. If you experience discomfort at any time during the pregnancy massage, tell your therapist immediately.
Benefits of Prenatal Massage Therapy
Nice to be Kneaded
Registered Massage Therapy