Who better deserves and needs good massage therapy than a mother to be? I cannot think of anyone, can you? Pregnancy is a very stressful time in a woman’s life; on the physical level as well as on the emotional. By increasing the blood and lymph circulation, by lowering the heart rate, by relaxing the body, and by easing the mind; massage therapy can be very beneficial on both of these levels as it relieves common symptoms of this delicate feminine condition: muscle cramps, spasms, and myofascial pain of the lower back, neck, shoulders, hips, and legs; the excess stress on weight-bearing joints; the swelling of the extremities (arms, hands, legs, and feet); sleep difficulties and the psychological turmoil (stress, anxiety, fear, and restlessness). Many independent studies have conclusively shown that the positively beneficial effects of massage therapy during pregnancy also benefit the growing child in the mother’s womb as well as resulting in an easier labor and in a less painful delivery.
What is the difference between Pregnancy Massage and any other massage? Well, there are a number of very important differences which should not be overlooked. And due to those differences, therapists who perform massage therapy on pregnant women must be specially trained and certified accordingly, and they must always take those extra few precautionary measures:
- Pregnancy Massage should not be performed until the first trimester of the pregnancy has been concluded because the increased blood circulation may lead to dizziness and a worsening of the existing morning sickness symptoms.
- Positioning of the pregnant woman is detrimental to her safety and the safety of the child she is carrying. If using a massage table for the Pregnancy Massage session, it must be a semi-reclining table. In the event that such an appropriate table is not available, the pregnant woman should lie on her side and switch sides in midsession to make both her hips available for the massage treatment. A wide variety of pillows (body pillows, wedge pillows and extra padding pillows) set in a few strategic places under the pregnant woman’s body can greatly add to her comfort.
Important safety measures: The pregnant woman must never lie directly on her belly and
the flat, horizontal table with the hole for the belly must never be used as it inflicts too much stress on her lower back.
- There are certain parts of the pregnant woman’s body that must never be massaged or pressed; both sides of the ankles as well as the webbing between the thumbs and the index fingers are pressure points that can induce early labor when exposed to sustained pressure.
For the great majority of the time, Pregnancy Massages are perfectly safe and much advised. However, under certain very specific conditions, Pregnancy Massages should not be attempted without consulting a medical specialist and those conditions may be: women who are at risk of preterm labor and women with blood clots or related blood clotting disorders.
How are Pregnancy Massages and any other massages similar to one another? Every human being, (pregnant or not, female or male, young or old, rich or poor) enjoys the touch of another human being as it conveys comfort, love, awareness, caring, security, and too many other wonderful sensations to name in this single short oration. Pregnancy Massage as well as any other kind of massage provides all that and more.