Prenatal massage can make the world of difference for a soon-to-be mom! While being pregnant it is natural for the body to begin to compensate for the growing baby. This means more weight is being carried in the lower back and shoulders to support the stomach and more weight is being put on the feet and legs. After a few months this weight can begin to take its toll! Many women will begin having aches and pains after 4 months and sometimes will begin to see swelling in some areas of the body like their feet, hands, and ankles. This is where a prenatal massage can begin to help.
Not only will a massage help to relieve any soreness or swelling in an expectant mother, it has many other health benefits for both the mother and baby in the oven. Most pregnant women begin to struggle with insomnia at some point throughout pregnancy. Massage can help the woman to relax and also increases endorphins in the body that can help lessen depression which can sometimes be the cause of lack of sleep. Massage can also help to increase the elimination of toxins in the body through the lymphatic system and can help boost the bodies’ natural immune system to help keep both the mommy and baby healthier throughout pregnancy.
A pregnancy massage is basically a customized Swedish massage. Since after 22 weeks a woman should not lay on her stomach the massage is performed with the woman laying on her side. A pillow is placed under the head and in between the legs for comfort and to help keep the body aligned. A medium to light pressure is applied through the entire massage. Usually the lower back, legs, feet, and head are the main focus areas but it can depend on where the woman is holding her weight and stress during her pregnancy.
The prenatal massage can be performed at any month of pregnancy but every woman should consult with a doctor before receiving a massage while pregnant just to ensure the safety of the woman and the baby. After 9 months of pregnancy, when closer to the due date of the child or past due date, and if approved by their doctor a woman can begin to receive a reflexology massage. Reflexology can help to get the pregnancy in motion. Just how many pregnant women begin to walk or bounce on a ball to kick start the pregnancy, a reflexology massage can be performed regularly to help speed up the process.