Pregnancy Massage FAQ
Here are the top 3 questions and answers I get asked by mothers who are interested in learning more about pregnancy massages.
Question 1. “Why should I get a pregnancy massage?”
There are many positives from receiving relaxing massages for your general wellbeing, however these few are especially beneficial while pregnant:
- Lowers stress and anxiety levels. Massage can help significantly reduce your cortisol levels (the stress hormone) during pregnancy. This can help improve your mood and vitality, while also reducing depression.
- Reduced labour time and a lower risk of premature birth. Research has shown that mothers who had regular massages were likely to benefit from a shorter labour of up to 3 hours with less need for medication, while their newborns were also less likely to be born prematurely.
- Alleviates muscle pain and cramps. Massage can help decrease pain from common musculoskeletal conditions of pregnancy including:
- Sacroiliac joint pain
- Lower back pain and Sciatica
- Hip joint pain
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Improved sleep quality. Massage stimulates the production of the hormones melatonin and serotonin within the body, helping to regulate sleep rhythms.
- Reduces joint swelling. Low circulation and pressure on the blood vessels commonly cause the hands and feet to swell (oedema). Massage can help improve circulation and lessen the build up of this excess fluid, while also improving lymph drainage and stress on the heart.
- Reduces your baby’s stress hormones. Pregnancy massage can also have a significant impact on your baby’s cortisol levels, helping to calm them down and reduce their overall stress in the womb.
Question 2. “Is it safe to get a massage in later pregnancy?”
Yes, you can have a massage at any time during your pregnancy!
However, there are a number of things that you need to be aware of as the risks to you (and your baby) are significantly higher when pregnant.
One such example would be if the mother lies on her right side in the later stages of pregnancy. This can cause the baby to compress your inferior vena cava (the largest vein returning to the heart), resulting in a drop in the mother’s blood pressure, dizziness and possibly fainting.
Therefore, if you are suffering from aches and pains it is imperative you seek out an experienced massage therapist who has trained in pregnancy massage… and not just letting your partner rub your back at home.
Question 3. “Is it safe to lie on my stomach?”
Laying on your stomach, particularly in the early days of pregnancy is unlikely to do your unborn baby any harm. The bump might be impractical, but it’s not dangerous.
Yet, while it might be safe, as your bump grows it probably won’t remain very comfortable.
Most pregnant women find that before too long they are simply unable to physically lay on their stomach before the discomfort renders them unable.
However, during all of our pregnancy massages we utilise the professional belly pillow. This allows you to lay on your stomach (taking the pressure off your back), completely relax and enjoy your gentle pregnancy massage.