Studies have found that moms-to-be can reap both mental and physical rewards from prenatal massage. Techniques used can reduce pregnancy discomforts and concerns and enhance the physiological and emotional well-being of both mother and fetus. Visiting Brielle Integrated Healthcare for prenatal massage can reduce pregnancy discomforts and concerns and enhance the physiological and emotional well-being of both mother and fetus.
Why Prenatal Massage is Recommended
Pregnancy massage is a common alternative therapy recommended by doctors. One reason: Pregnancy does a number on your posture. It compresses your lower back, weakens your core, and places a lot of pressure on your legs and feet. Your muscles will certainly appreciate a massage when they’ve been carrying around an extra load. Plus, the weight of your growing baby can cause leg muscles to tense and swell. This inflames nearby nerves and can lead to sciatic nerve pain. Applying mild pressure to your muscle groups helps reduce swelling by stimulating blood flow throughout your body.
Advantages of Pregnancy Massage
Beyond relieving tight muscles, there are other advantages of prenatal massage. Studies from the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami suggest that moms-to-be who get a weekly massage have:
- lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol
- higher levels of the feel-good hormones serotonin and dopamine
Researchers have linked these hormonal changes to fewer childbirth complications, including a 75 percent reduction in premature births among depressed women. Though you don’t need to be depressed to reap the benefits of massage, another study found that pregnant women suffering from depression had significant improvement in mood, as well as decreased anxiety, after receiving a 20-minute massage twice a week.
A prenatal massage differs from a traditional one: For starters, you’ll likely be either lying on your side or sitting in a semi-reclining position. Lying on your back puts too much pressure on your abdomen and can restrict blood flow.
To keep your spine in alignment and alleviate lower-back pressure, your massage therapist may use specially designed pillows or bolsters to support your knees and feet. You may have the option to lie face-down on a massage table that has a hole for your belly. However, many women find this position uncomfortable, especially as their pregnancy progresses. Prenatal massages may also be shorter — 30 to 45 minutes versus the usual 60 to 90 minutes.
Pregnancy does a number on your posture. It compresses your lower back, weakens your core, and places a lot of pressure on your legs and feet. Your muscles will certainly appreciate a massage when they’ve been carrying around an extra load.
No parts of the body are completely off-limits, even feet. While some people fear that massaging certain areas of the foot can bring on labor, it’s not accurate. This belief most likely stems from reflexology pressure points on the sides of the ankles linked with the ovaries and uterus.
Your First Prenatal Massage
Prenatal massage is generally considered safe, but talk to your ob-gyn first; he/she may advise against massage if your pregnancy is high risk or if you have a condition like preeclampsia or high blood pressure. It is also best to seek a local massage therapist that is certified in prenatal massage. Contact the specialists at Brielle Integrated Healthcare today!