Swollen ankles. A sore back. An increasingly heavy belly. These are some of the experiences of pregnancy. Many women ask if massage is safe to relieve their pregnancy pains and safe for their baby. Studies indicate (as do moms-to-be who’ve experienced it) that prenatal massage therapy offers many benefits throughout pregnancy. Benefits include reduced anxiety, decreased symptoms of depression, muscle ache and joint pain relief, and improved labor outcomes and newborn health. Here the massage therapists at Brielle Integrated Health take a closer look at the many benefits of prenatal massage.
It’s been proven that hormone levels associated with relaxation and stress are significantly altered when massage therapy is introduced to a woman’s prenatal care routine. In turn, this leads to mood regulation and better cardiovascular health. How so? Levels of bad hormones (norepinephrine and cortisol, a.k.a stress hormones) were reduced while levels of good hormones (dopamine and serotonin) levels were increased.
These changes in hormone levels also led to fewer labor and delivery complications as well as fewer newborn complications, such as low birth weight.
Reduction of Swelling
A huge benefit to prenatal massage is reduced swelling! Edema (swelling of the joints during pregnancy) is often caused by reduced circulation and increased pressure on the major blood vessels by the uterus. Massage therapy stimulates soft tissues to reduce collection of fluids in swollen joints.
Improvement of Nerve Pain
Familiar with sciatic nerve pain? Most pregnant women can answer “yes!” Sciatic nerve pain typically occurs in late pregnancy as the heavy uterus rests on muscles of the lower back and pelvic floor.
The pressure of the uterus spreads tension to the muscles of the upper and lower leg, causing them to swell and puts pressure on nearby nerves. Prenatal massage therapy can release tension in these muscles to ease the pain of the inflamed nerves.
Schedule Pregnancy Massage Therapy
Prenatal massage therapy has several benefits for both mom and her future child. Reduce swelling, improve and regulate your pregnancy hormones, and relieve lower back and sciatic nerve pain.
At Brielle Integrated Healthcare, our massage therapists are certified prenatal massage therapists and have received training beyond the national standards for massage therapy. If you would like more information on our prenatal massage or would like to make an appointment with one of our highly trained, certified massage therapists, please contact us today at 732.292.9900.