Pregnancy is an incredible time in a woman's life, full of wonder, joy, and love. Your body is working hard, and it can experience a variety of new and different aches, pains, and concerns.
Massage therapy is a specialized complementary choice for prenatal care and is a natural, healthy way to reduce stress. The American Pregnancy Association states “Women can begin massage therapy at any point in their pregnancy – during the first, second, or third trimester.” Massage relieves many of the usual discomforts of pregnancy, such as backaches, headaches, stiff neck, leg cramps, and swelling (edema).
In addition, massage generally works to alleviate stress on weight-bearing joints; encourages blood and lymph circulation; aids in reducing nervous tension, which promotes more restful sleep; and can help relieve depression or anxiety caused by hormonal changes.
The Relief of Massage
Massage for pregnant women offers a number of benefits, and your therapist will work closely with you to pinpoint any areas where you need relief. Some issues we can work on include:
- Headaches, which can be relieved by massage focusing on the head, neck and shoulders. At the same time, providing stress relief through massage reduces the chances of migraines or tension headaches by relaxing trigger points and muscle spasms.
- Muscle tension, created by carrying the extra baby weight, can be relieved by increasing blood flow to the affected areas. This oxygenates the blood, plus increases the flow of lymphatic fluid, helping to flush out toxins and metabolic waste.
- Fatigue, backaches, leg cramps, and swelling/edema can all be diminished through different massage techniques.
- The normal aches and pains of pregnancy are eased by the release of serotonin, your body's natural pain relief, which is stimulated by massage.
- Sleeplessness or restless sleep is also improved by massage. Regular massage therapy not only helps diminish anxiety and discomfort but boosts relaxation as well. The serotonin, endorphins, and dopamine your body releases during massage all combine to provide deeper, more restful sleep.
During Your Prenatal Massage
As with any therapy, you need to discuss massage with your doctor ahead of time. At Your Body Needs, our specially trained therapists take extra care to ensure your comfort and well-being. We offer special pillows and wedges to ensure that you are relaxed and supported during your massage, and to alleviate any extra strain on your lower back or pelvic areas. Extra strain in these areas can cause unnecessary back or abdominal pain, so we want to avoid any potential discomfort. We even have a "Prego Pillow" which allows some women to lie on their stomach during the massage!
Your massage therapy session will be personalized to address and manage your individual needs. We have three aromatherapy options specifically formulated for prenatal use. They are: Lavender, De-Stress blend (chamomile, lavender, and grapefruit), and Muscle Relief blend (cypress, juniper berry, frankincense, and lavender). Your therapist will discuss your physical and emotional needs, and select the most appropriate, beneficial techniques. On one day, you may need relief from back or neck pain, while on another you may be more in need of relaxation and stress relief. Whatever your needs, we're here to support you and your baby through this beautiful, personal journey.
Click here to schedule a relaxing, healing massage for you and your baby. If you have ore questions, don't hesitate to call us -- we'll take good care of you!