Pregnancy Massage is a specialised Massage, incorporating remedial and therapeutic techniques as is required, to meet the individual needs of the pregnant woman and her baby. Ideally, a specially trained practitioner will treat you, to assist with the tensions and discomforts experienced during pregnancy. Massage is often thought of as a pleasant indulgence or a relaxing treat, whereas it is much more than that. Pregnancy is the ideal time to seek out massage to support the various changes you will experience as a pregnant woman.
A therapeutic treatment might include various techniques such as remedial massage, acupressure and acupoints, medi-cupping, pulsing, fascia-stretches to Bowen or lymphatic drainage for a complete treatment.
Benefits of a Pregnancy Massage?
- There are many benefits for the pregnant woman. It helps to short-circuit and relieve more troublesome discomforts such as back pain, sciatica, and onset and reduction of oedema (fluid retention).
- These discomforts are often caused by the extra weight and shift in the centre of gravity in being pregnant. In addition, nurturing, emotional support and education provided by the skilled practitioner, will support you in coping with the various changes of your pregnancy, in both body and mind.
- Pregnancy massage helps you to be more comfortable with your body changes and to accept them with more understanding.
- Pre-existing or old injuries / or tendencies maybe exacerbated and inflamed by pregnancy, which massage can reduce and relieve.
- Malpositioned babies who are in a less than ideal position, such as breech or posterior, can be encouraged to move into a more favourable position, particularly if there is any musculo-skeletal tension at play, or emotional considerations as well.
Regular massage throughout the pregnancy, can also shorten labour time, and aid your return to optimal health after birth.
Sometimes a woman might require extra emotional support, if her individual circumstances are not supporting her in the pregnancy; in which case, pregnancy counselling may be a useful aid for you to consider.
How comfortable will you be?
Clients express genuine surprise how comfortable they are lying on their front and would love to have their own pregnancy cushion for home use! That’s an indication of comfort.
During a massage – initially a woman lies face-down (prone position), then turns onto her back (supine position) with her shoulders and head elevated and support in other areas where she requires it. When she lies prone on the pregnancy cushion, it means that her back can be treated more evenly and effectively than in the more restrictive side-lying position. However she may also lie in the side-lying position to treat shoulders and / or hips to greater effect.
When she turns into the supine position with elevation, the time spent lying on her back is brief and in no way injurious to her health and her baby’s. There is a rather over-developed concern in the general community, that a woman should minimize any lying on her back at all during her pregnancy. This concern is based on the weight of the pregnant uterus that can slow the return of blood to your heart, and may reduce blood flow to the foetus. It may mean the baby is getting less oxygen and fewer nutrients.
However there is no risk whatsoever when lying on your back during a massage and your comfort is ensured at all times. Sometimes it is more comfortable for a pregnant woman to lie on her side and receive treatment that way. Knowledgable care and consideration of her needs help give the pregnant woman the most comfort in receiving a beneficial massage treatment.
The Pregnancy Cushion
The ‘special’ Pregnancy Cushion is an extra layer that sits on top of an existing massage table, with a cut-out portion specially shaped to fit your pregnant belly while lying on your front. As you grow bigger, more soft cushioning and elevation is required to give more comfort and support. The massage table surface underneath adds extra support and takes away any strain on a woman’s back muscles and abdominals (often forgotten under baby), particularly on turning over. The pregnancy cushion is made from high quality Australian memory foam which supports large and sensitive breasts perfectly. No more being squashed!
More Benefits of Pregnancy Massage
- Decreases back and leg pain. Common areas of need are lower back (gluteals/buttocks, sacral area, legs, neck and shoulders)
- Improves sleep
- Massage reduces peripheral swelling (oedema/fluid retention)
- Stimulates your circulation and lymphatic systems, giving you more energy
- Regulates blood pressure
- Improves mental and physical health
- Decreases levels of cortisol, an indicator of stress
- Decreases levels of the stress hormone norepinephrine and helps to lower anxiety
- Soothes the nervous system by increasing levels of the “feel-good” hormones serotonin and dopamine
- An overall improvement in mood
- Education pertinent to your condition further assists you, to understand and normalise the different changes you are experiencing; and how it relates to your body and mindset, and your baby’s wellbeing as well.
- Research has shown that, for the general population, massage has other potential benefits. It may relieve pain, or it may boost the immune system’s ability to fight off viruses and tumours. Therefore massage is even more important for the pregnant woman.
Is Pregnancy Massage Safe during pregnancy?
Pregnancy Massage is safe and effective for all pregnant women from early on in their pregnancy to late pregnancy. However there are always times when treatment might be contraindicated (not recommended) and as such, your concerns may need to be discussed with your practitioner, caregiver or doctor, prior to a treatment.
The current prevalent advice is to insist that women not lie on their backs while pregnant, during sleep in particular. It really is an exaggerated concern and at best a recommendation that could be followed by some women, when deemed useful, but not for otherwise normal and healthy women.
During the later stages of pregnancy (from about 30 weeks or so), the uterus and baby may be large enough to press on the large vein, the inferior vena cava, and reduce flow of blood from the lower body (and uterus) back to the heart. But this tends to matter only in certain circumstances such as: maternal high blood pressure, kidneys not functioning properly, or concerns about the baby’s development.
In those situations, lying on the left side may be somewhat helpful, but for normal, healthy women in the midst of a routine, successful pregnancy, the best position for sleeping is the one that’s most comfortable.
When can you have a Pregnancy Massage?
- General advice is that after the 1st trimester at 12 weeks, it is deemed safer to have a pregnancy massage. Reasons given are that women feel more comfortable in themselves, but more because the baby’s organ development is more complete. However, a pregnancy massage in particular is not a stressful or arduous activity. A woman can choose to schedule a massage early on if she requires one. Although if there is any concern, a woman is best required to check with her caregiver (GP, midwife or obstetrician).
- Regular massage throughout a woman’s pregnancy makes a substantial difference to her overall health, and in keeping up with the changing needs of her baby onboard. She can feel supported and cared for in a very special way that is different from the care of her other health providers.
- Going overdue / late for dates / needing to be induced for various reasons – is a stressful event in itself. Choosing a Natural Labour Induction Massage can work to relieve your stress and to help induce your labour. There are no guarantees, but you can be assured of feeling more comfortable in yourself and more ready to go into labour.
Find out how we can help you.
Mobile 0438 216 351
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Comments check out what our other clients say!
Possible concerns where massage might be contraindicated:
- Previous miscarriage – in which case to commence massage past the first trimester
- Severe discomfort and pain symptoms in the pelvic or abdominal area. Needs to be checked out by caregiver
- Blood spotting – always needs to be checked out at any time during your pregnancy
The massage was a welcomed relief. Thank you for your soothing nature and sleeping tips. Many thanks, Belinda
Claire has been my massage therapist for 5 years, I initially went to see her during my first pregnancy during which I saw her on a monthly basis to alleviate the back pain associated with carrying a baby, after every visit she always managed to fix the areas that were causing aggravation, allowing me to have a much more enjoyable pain free pregnancy. I have continued to see Claire over the years and she always assesses my problem based on our discussion prior to the session and then works on my body accordingly. Claire has a very thorough understanding of the body and actively massages the related areas needed to rectify the problem areas. I have never walked out of Claire’s office without having significant pain reduction that always within the next day, it has completely disappeared. I have no hesitation in recommending Claire, she is the best massage therapist I have ever gone to and I know when I go to see her that she will always fix the problem.
“I consulted Claire when I was 37 weeks pregnant and was struggling to walk due to hip discomfort (this is despite remaining reasonably active throughout my pregnancy) – following my initial consultation with Claire the discomfort in my hips was alleviated allowing me to walk as freely as could be expected at 37 weeks pregnant, I had a further appointment with Claire before giving birth and was equally as please with the outcome.”
Claire’s massages and knowledge gave me energy throughout pregnancy and confidence going into labour. Claire takes a holistic approach using a combination of techniques to locate and relieve physical and internaltension. I also found my stamina increased and always felt a sense of strength and peace after each session.
Claire also shared insights with me about changes in my body and my baby’s development. She gave me simple-to-follow exercises and advice to support some of my pregnancy difficulties. Claire is an experienced, perceptive and warm person not to mention Claire has magic hands! Having a regular session with Claire is a happy and relaxing part of life. I highly recommend Claire to everyone I meet.
How much is a Pregnancy Massage?
- $125 – for an hour
- $165 – for 1.5 hour
- Gift Vouchers are also available.
Claire is a specialist practitioner who is trained and experienced in pregnancy massage.
You can be assured that your treatment will be beneficial and relaxing for you and baby both, at whatever stage of your pregnancy, and afterwards as well.