Pregnancy can be one of the most joyous and unforgettable times in a woman’s life! However, throughout this time, you may also feel worried, anxious or stressed. Prenatal massage during your pregnancy works to support vitality, overall health, and the well-being of you and your unborn baby.
Studies indicate that massage during pregnancy may address many common discomforts associated with the musculoskeletal and circulatory changes brought on by hormone shifts during the pregnancy.
Benefits of pregnancy massage:
- Reduces stress and promotes relaxation
- Reduces oedema and lowers blood pressure
- Relieves varicose veins and increases lymph and blood flow
- Reduces muscle and joint pain, including backaches, cramps, and pelvic girdle pain (PGP)
- Facilitates hormonal, respiratory, gastrointestinal, urinary and other physiological processes, which occur in pregnancy
What happens during a pregnancy massage?
The massage uses a mixture of Swedish body Massage, Shiatsu techniques, and other clinical massage techniques required to treat effectively. It is performed in a side-lying position on a massage table. Cushions are used to support your ‘bump’ and between your knees, to support and balance the pelvis.
Depending on the reason for treatment, the massage therapist will either treat the whole body or target a particular area that is causing discomfort.
How frequently should I get a antenatal massage?
Evidence says – “Women who received bi-weekly antenatal massages for five weeks were found to have decreased levels of stress hormones cortisol and norepinephrine. This is important, as this could lead to a strengthened immune system and decreased pain throughout the body. Not only did levels of stress hormones decrease, but the levels of “relaxation” hormones dopamine and serotonin were also increased. Low levels of either of these hormones are associated with depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders.”
The frequency of massages can be as often as you like. Even just one massage can help make you more comfortable as your body undergoes many changes.
During this time we would recommend:
Once or twice a month for the first two trimesters. During the third trimester, your body undergoes many changes as the baby starts to gain weight at a rate of about half a pound per week. During this time, it is recommended you come in at least every two weeks.
The birth of your baby will bring much joy and great happiness as well as bring change to your life both physically and emotionally. Postnatal massage is a great way to take care of yourself following the birth, especially during the first six weeks. Postnatal massage can be given as soon after the birth as the mother requires.
Benefits of Postnatal massage: (60 or 90 minutes)
- Pain relief – a new mother’s body holds a variety of different positions for feeding, changing, and carrying new accessories (car seats, nappy bags, etc). Childcare can cause arm, shoulder, neck and back pain.
- Massage can help a new mother regain her posture and reduce muscle strain.
- Speeds healing
- Improves concentration
- Reduces stress, anxiety and postpartum depression – Studies indicate that massage reduces the stress hormone cortisol. Essential oils can also be added to the treatment to aid in hormone and mood balance.
- Decreases swelling
- Provides deep relaxation – extremely important when you are exhausted due to lack of sleep