I look back on my (many) days of pregnancy with fondness. They were some of my best, most exciting days and also some of the most demanding! While each mama and each pregnancy is different: as my belly grew so did the aches and pains, especially in subsequent pregnancies. And even though they were some of the best times of my life, mostly filled with good stressors, it was stress nonetheless. During that time my massage therapist was my shining light, my hero, my favorite person in the world. She improved my quality of life and I’m sure the in-utero experience of my babies.
I held her in such high regard in fact, that as my health education journey progressed I decided to study prenatal massage therapy. Through my own experience receiving prenatal massage and through providing the service to many women during my career I have discovered that massage can have the following benefits:
Benefits of Prenatal Massage
Improves breathing and digestion. I actually learned how to breathe while I was pregnant and I believe it changed my life moving forward.
Encourages deep relaxation of the body and mind! That little bit of down time, the blissful essential oils and soft music all provide an environment for disconnecting from external stimulation and finding connection to your baby and yourself. The stress-reducing effect of massage not only relaxes mama (and baby), but it may also improve blood supply (ie oxygen, nutrients, etc) to the uterus!
Relieves muscle tension and joint pain. Babies are heavy and the weight can cause postural changes resulting in back pain, hip pain, tension in the ribs and neck, even swelling of the feet and legs. Having a skilled body worker get into those achy, bound up, swelled up and over stretched areas is life changing!
Finding the now. Massage feels good and brings you into your body and the current moment in a relaxed and peaceful way. The moment we are in is the only one that truly exists. It is a gift to feel it and acknowledge the blessing that it is.
The benefits of massage therapy may also improve labor and delivery…my last babe was born 10 minutes after arriving at the hospital!
Postnatal Massage for Recovery
The package has arrived! Congratulations! The postnatal period is a new adventure indeed! Massage may help in these ways:
Relaxation and rest is key to recovery. Carving out time to connect to (and care for) your self is an important skill to master early on as a parent. It will literally keep you sane, healthy and enjoying your life as a parent. Trust me. Aaaand...nap time. Seriously, you might just adore the time to take a nap. There is nothing like dozing on the massage table only to wake to a refreshed body and mind!
Relieve newly acquired tension in the back, neck and chest from carrying and holding and bouncing the babe. Isn’t it surprising how heavy that tiny babe is?! At this time your body is readjusting from carrying babe inside, to outside…WOW! This is a great time to rebalance tension patterns and reconnect to you.
6 weeks to 3 months after birth, light abdominal massage therapy can aid in abdominal recovery.
While not required, time to chat with an empathetic listener can work wonders in improving the new mamas mood. And I am always happy to discuss natural remedies to aid in health and healing. Have you ever heard of a vaginal steam? Let’s chat!
Identifying Qualified Pre- and Perinatal Massage Therapists
Finding a therapist who has specific training in pre and perinatal massage therapy will give you a safe, effective and overall better experience.
Your therapist should be educated in specific techniques for prenatal issues, and also be aware of contraindications during a session. This information is covered in prenatal massage training.
Also keep in mind that there are topical applications (liniments, essential oils, etc.) that are not suitable for pregnancy. There are also some that are safe and hugely beneficial! It’s important for your therapist to know what is going to provide you with the greatest benefit!
I hope you found this information useful. To book a prenatal massage at our sweet Vitality Center, Meadowsweet Gifts & Wellness in Morrison, CO please visit www.herbinalchemy.com or call 3035249831. For questions or concerns call us or email firstname.lastname@example.org Be well and may your pregnancy and family life be blessed. -Talai