Pregnancy is one of the most wonderful times of your life, but that doesn’t mean that your body and mind are always feeling that way! You’re growing a human being inside you, and that means that your body has to make a plethora of changes to accommodate the growth and the needs of the baby.
You’ll experience aches and pains, indigestion, nausea, fatigue, heartburn, and so many other physical symptoms. Don’t worry – they’re all natural and can be dealt with easily with solutions like prenatal massages.
A prenatal massage is a type of massage offered to pregnant women to ease some of the physical symptoms of pregnancy. These massages are generally considered safe; however, you should speak to your OB/GYN before booking an appointment with the prenatal massage therapist nearby, just to be on the same side.
One of the most commonly asked questions about prenatal massage is when you should get it. Additionally, people wonder about its benefits at different stages of pregnancy.
Well, we’re here to answer both of these questions. Just keep reading!
How does prenatal massage help during the first trimester?
You may have heard that it’s not safe to get a prenatal massage during the first trimester, however, there is no scientific evidence that suggests that this increases the risk of miscarriage at this time. Thus, as long as it’s okay with your OB/GYN or midwife, you can get a massage during the first three months of pregnancy.
During this time, your prenatal massage therapist will mainly focus on any pre-existing issues that you might have. This is because there is a high chance that pregnancy may exacerbate these conditions. Some of the pre-existing issues that are targeted include back pain, shoulder pain and pelvic pain.
Additionally, prenatal massage at this time can also help with hormone-based issues such as morning sickness, headaches and constipation.
How does prenatal massage help during the second trimester?
One of the best things about the second trimester is that the hormone-based symptoms such as morning sickness start to alleviate. These symptoms are replaced by other physical symptoms that stem from the fact that the uterus is expanding, leading to changes in your centre of gravity.
At this point, prenatal massage can be used to get rid of muscle tension and also help with posture. The massage will also help with toning the ligaments and preparing the body for further growth and eventual labour.
How does prenatal massage help during the third trimester?
Prenatal massage during the third trimester is designed mainly to help your body have a good labour experience. Additionally, during this time, your body will see new physical symptoms such as swelling in the legs, back pain and digestive issues.
From a mental health perspective, this is the time when women start to experience a few symptoms such as anxiety and depression. This does not happen to all women, but can be quite challenging for those who must face it.
Prenatal massage can help alleviate these mental health symptoms to a degree. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t tell your doctor about them.
Some benefits of prenatal massage in general
As you’ve read, prenatal massage offers specific benefits during each stage of pregnancy. However, it’s also important to know about the general benefits it offers, so that you can make an informed decision regarding whether you want to get the therapy done.
Some of the benefits of prenatal massage include:
- Reduction in hip and joint pain, headaches sciatica, muscle spasms, leg cramps, and lower back pain
- Reduction in hormone-based symptoms like depression and anxiety
- Better sleep due to muscle relaxation (and reduction in insomnia)
- Reduction in stretch marks post-pregnancy
- Enhanced blood flow for the baby and mother
- Fewer digestive and respiratory problems
It’s best to remember that the prenatal massages can also be customized to meet the needs of the woman, as everyone’s body is different, and everyone reacts differently to pregnancy. Your first appointment with your massage therapist will include lots of questions about your symptoms, and your therapy sessions will then be designed based on the same.
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