Most women will agree that there’s nothing more relaxing and provides more relief during pregnancy than a prenatal massage. Besides the obvious relaxation benefits, there are many physiological, mental and emotional benefits as well.
During pregnancy, a woman’s body undergoes numerous changes in a short amount of time, which can sometimes cause pain or discomfort. Massage is a wonderful way to alleviate this discomfort, while promoting a sense of well-being.
At Restorative Massage on the Hill, we utilize a comfortable and secure side-lying position where the new mother is completely supported by pillows, keeping her top hip, knee and ankle on the same level to avoid pulling on the sacroiliac joint, and to maximize blood and lymph circulation. Gentle Swedish, deep tissue in the gluteal area, range of motion and gentle stretching, abdominal massage (after the first trimester), acupressure, reflexology techniques, as well as craniosacral therapy are integrated into the treatment.
Some of the techniques we use include:
- Gentle range-of-motion and stretching movements to relieve pressure through neck, shoulders, rib cage, lower back and hips, and to promote greater strength flexibility and balance
- Integrated deep tissue work in the hip and gluteal area to help alleviate chronic lower back and hip pain and sciatic pain
- Abdominal massage for round ligament pain, to support digestion, increased circulation to the placenta and baby and increase awareness of the baby. The baby will feel and benefit from the massage
- Lymph drainage strokes to reduce pregnancy induced edema
- Craniosacral Therapy for physical/psychological/emotional/spiritual centering
- Acupressure and reflexology techniques shown to be effective in treating many common pregnancy related complaints
Besides relaxation, tension release and increased circulation, prenatal massage can help to improve digestion. It helps reduce swelling and it can alleviate the stress on weight-bearing joints, like the knees, which are impacted by the extra weight of a growing baby. There are also studies that have been done that indicate that regular and routine massages may lead to a decreased labor time.
Some other benefits of Prenatal massage include:
- Helps control blood pressure
- Strengthens the immune system
- Directly affects the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system, reducing stress and its consequences for mother and baby
- Helps mother and baby bond through relaxation and breathing
- Alleviates anxiety and depression
- Strengthens muscles in preparation for labor and delivery
- Allows for deeper breathing and a better night's sleep
- Helps keep skin supple to help prevent stretch marks
- Maintains body posture and balance
- Enhances self image
- Reduces postpartum depression
*As with all treatments during pregnancy, we recommend that each new mother checks with her health care provider before receiving massage, especially in the first trimester, or if her pregnancy is considered “high risk.”
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