Pregnancy is a time of great joy and excitement but it can also be challenging for the expecting mother. Fortunately, a prenatal massage is one of the safest and most effective ways to ease discomfort and reduce stress during this exciting time.
In many cases, women who receive regular massages in the past have reported a reduced risk of complications during pregnancy such as edema (swelling), back and neck pain, and even insomnia. Moreover, some studies suggest that massage can help to increase the bond between mother and child.
During a Prenatal Massage, the expectant mother lies on a padded table in a side-lying position while supported by pillows and blankets to ensure comfort and safety during the massage. The massage therapist uses techniques such as Swedish massage, acupressure and gentle stretching to relax the muscles and improve circulation.
The most common requests from pregnant clients involve problems with the lower back, hips and neck. This is because these areas are most impacted by the increased weight and swelling that occurs during pregnancy. In addition, swollen feet and ankles are common during pregnancy due to hormonal changes that cause fluid retention. Thankfully, the specialized techniques used in a prenatal massage can help to reduce these symptoms.
Another common pregnancy symptom is round ligament pain, which results from the increased weight of the uterus over the soft tendons. The swollen joints can be relieved by massaging the soft tissue around the round ligament and by improving circulation.
Pregnancy Massage can also help to ease sciatic nerve pain. This is a condition that often occurs in late pregnancy as the swollen and stretched abdominal muscles place pressure on the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back down through the legs.
Massage during pregnancy can also stimulate the lymphatic system, which helps to drain away excess fluid build up in swollen joints and tissues. This is especially important in the third trimester when the body is producing up to 50% more fluid to prepare for childbirth.
In general, a prenatal massage is beneficial to most expecting mothers as long as the therapist has specific training in this area and the client gets the go-ahead from her doctor. Some practitioners recommend waiting until the second trimester of pregnancy to begin, but with the ok from the physician and proper positioning, prenatal massage is safe at any stage of gestation.
It is also a good idea for expecting mothers to drink plenty of water both before and after the massage to hydrate the skin and support healthy circulation. This is particularly helpful if the woman experiences cramping or gas during the massage. Lastly, it is always wise to avoid deep pressure on the abdomen and around the ankles and feet in order to prevent a blood clot. If you have questions, ask your doctor or midwife. They can provide you with valuable information about the safety of prenatal massage. Also, be sure to tell your therapist that you are pregnant and to avoid any areas that should be avoided. If you need the service of a prenatal massage therapist in Atlanta visit https://www.atlantachiropractor.net/.