If you were used to getting massages before pregnancy, now that you are a future mother you most definitely ask yourself: “Can pregnant women get massages?” Well, you`ll be happy to find that they can.
A child means a blessing, a miracle that will change your life forever, showered your emotions with a mixture of euphoria and fear alike. And although the period of pregnancy is one of the most important and beautiful stages of a woman`s life, the mother`s organism suffers a lot of transformations, often accompanied by less pleasant sensations or general discomfort.
If you are a future mother, these unpleasant symptoms are already familiar: back pain, shoulder pain, headache, swollen legs, water retention, and so on. And because you are a woman, stretch marks and overweight issues will affect you as well. Prenatal massage was especially designed for the comfort of the future mother, for her to feel beautiful, healthy, relaxed and pampered. The mother`s physical and mental health is extremely important, because the well being is also transmitted to the fetus.
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What Is Prenatal Massage?
Prenatal massage is a type of therapeutic massage which aims to stimulate the function of muscles and joints, improving blood circulation and strengthening the body`s health, such as removing fatigue and mental pressure. It meets the needs of future mothers through various methods, one of them being Swedish massage, which helps in relaxing muscles and boosting blood circulation by applying gentle pressure on certain muscle groups. Swedish massage is a method of massage for pregnant women recommended by experts, as it helps regulating various problems of discomfort during the 9 months of pregnancy, determined by the oscillation of hormone levels.
Benefits of Prenatal Massage
A lot of future mothers are afraid of massage during this period because they think it may affect the pregnancy. But this remains only a wrong myth, because if done correctly, prenatal massage has only positive effects.
Take a look at some of the benefits prenatal massage brings during pregnancy.
- It releases tension in various parts of the body.
- It eliminates back, shoulder and neck pain.
- It eliminates swollen legs, which are specific to pregnant women.
- It stimulates blood circulation, deficient during pregnancy.
- It eliminates toxins from the body.
- It suppresses fatigue, stress or anxiety.
- It improves sleep quality.
- It determines the release of serotonin (happiness hormone).
- It induces of general physical and emotional state of well being.
- It improves skin firmness and elasticity.
- It prevents varicose veins and stretch marks.
- It helps in maintaining an optimal body weight.
- It acts against cellulite.
Based on studies in the past decade, it was found that prenatal massage can reduce stress and improve the levels of serotonin and dopamine, which when secreted in small amounts they induce a state of depression. These hormonal changes contribute to an easier childbirth, without complications and bringing a healthy child into this world.
Swollen legs, another aspect that pregnant women cannot ignore, occur due to poor blood circulation and increased pressure on major blood vessels, exerted by the increased uterus. In this case, massage is ideal for both stimulating soft tissue for reducing fluid collection in joints, as well as evacuating dead tissue, made by the body`s lymphatic system.
Statistics show that 75% – 90% from pregnant women are affected by unaesthetic stretch marks. If you want to prevent them, massage with specially chosen products is the most recommended.
Prenatal massage includes slow maneuvers of roller friction, light kneading (hammering, pressure, without violent or sudden maneuvers) and is being focused on areas of concern: back massage, shoulders and legs. Tummy massage isn`t recommended while pregnant.
How Is Prenatal Massage Performed?
Most experts consider that the optimal position for massaging a pregnant woman is for her to lie on one side, as the massages tables that are designed with a special space for the mother`s belly don`t offer a maximum safety degree, being possible to exert pressure on the uterus or to cause a stretch of the uterine ligaments.
Also, it`s important to appeal to a person skilled in this field, whom you can have an open conversation, because the patient-physician communication sets the intensity and pressure of the massage to avoid any kind of pain. At the same time, pay attention to the lubricant you are using for the massage – the best option is to choose one without a scent because pregnant women sometimes cannot stand strong odors, but mostly because some oils aren’t recommended during pregnancy.
The environment and conditions in which the massage is performed are extremely important. That`s why is preferred for the room to be very peaceful, which won`t allow the penetration of distracting noise, well-ventilated, possibly with some calm music to favor total relaxation. – Learn about this!
Depending on your time and mood, prenatal massage can be performed from 10 to 60 minutes, once a week during the second trimester of pregnancy and twice during the third trimester of pregnancy. You`ll see that even from the first session you`ll feel great and start to accept the changes that produce with your body.
When It`s Best to Start Prenatal Massage?
Considering the multitude and complexity of the changes which occur in the pregnant woman`s body, this kind of massage isn`t recommended during the first trimester of pregnancy, because it`s considered that it may lead to a miscarriage. However, it can be made along the second and third trimesters so acquire an enviable physical and mental condition.
Massage during pregnancy is generally safe for future mothers, but there are situations when this type of massage isn`t recommended:
- Important loss of blood or amniotic fluid. – Read this!
- Unusual pains.
- Contagious diseases.
- Morning sickness.
- Abdominal pain.
Also, it`s best not to rub these particular areas on your body:
- Varicose veins.
- Areas with local infections.
- Open wounds.
Pregnancy is a period that many mothers won`t ever forget, so it`s really important to feel great in your skin during the whole period of 9 months that is so rich in events, feelings and changes. – Check this out!
Massage is definitely a way of gaining a good mood and feeling for both you and your child. It will also help you overcome those difficult moments that may appear while pregnant, so you won`t keep unpleasant memories during this period of time that should be nothing else than wonderful.
6 Facts Related to Massage While Pregnant
If you are really interested in starting a few sessions of massage during pregnancy, it`s best if you`ll inform yourself of a few different aspects related to prenatal massage.
Can you get a foot massage while pregnant?
You might have heard by now that foot massages while expecting a baby aren`t really recommended because it might cause your uterus to contract. Rebecca Leary, a certified practitioner of prenatal massage, claims that “There`re acupressure points in feet, ankles and legs which correspond to the woman`s reproductive system.” This is a reflection of the present beliefs of many people according to whom massage on specific parts of the legs might have a deep effect on pregnancy. However, the same Ms. Leary outlines that “professional therapists are always trained to notice and avoid such acupressure points” on a pregnant woman`s legs, as this may send them into an induced labor.
Can you have a miscarriage from a foot massage?
It`s believed that there are “reflex points” for the ovaries and uterus on the ankles, so reflexologists think that by stimulating massage on these areas of the body may cause induced labor or miscarriage. However, there`s no evidence whatsoever to believe that this reflex points even exist. – More info!
Is it safe to have reflexology during pregnancy?
Maternity or prenatal reflexology is reflexology performed on a pregnant woman and the baby for physical, spiritual and emotional effects – pre-conceptually, throughout the entire pregnancy, the childbirth itself and after birth.
Reflexology is quite safe, but many reflexologists won`t perform this procedure on a woman who is expecting in her 13 pregnancy weeks. During this period there`s a normal risk of experiencing a miscarriage. Even if there`s no evidence to link this therapeutic type of treatment to miscarriage, many reflexologists agree that is best to avoid it. – Click here!
Can you get a facial while pregnant?
You`ll be happy to find out that you are allowed to get a basic facial while expecting. Actually, it may even help if you are experiencing skin problems, such as puffiness, dryness or breakouts. Heck, after getting a facial you might even get that popular pregnancy glow everyone`s talking about.
Can You Wax during Pregnancy?
Barring any possible sensitive skin problems you may experience, it is usually considered quite safe when being pregnant to get waxed. Thankfully, your pregnancy will help your hair grow faster, meaning you may find yourself more interested in removing some of your hair. – Read more!
What Is Fertility Massage?
It`s a relaxing routine which can be used as therapy for relieving stress. While receiving the massage, your body starts relaxing, your blood flow will increase, endorphins (those hormones that make you feel good) released and muscles relaxed.