We wanted to share our article on the Top 3 Benefits of Prenatal Massage. Sometimes if can be hard to schedule “me” time while pregnant, especially while working,and/or taking care of other children. But the time is vital and the benefits are proven…
Top 3 Benefits of PreNatal Massage
Studies show that massage therapy performed during pregnancy can reduce anxiety, decrease symptoms of depression, relieve muscle aches and joint pains, and improve labor outcomes and newborn health.
The Swedish Massage method is the recommended technique used because it addresses many common discomforts associated with the skeletal and circulatory changes brought on by hormone shifts during pregnancy.
Here are the top 3 benefits of Prenatal Massage:
1. Hormone Regulation-
Hormones are chemical messengers and sometimes, well, they can be quite challenging to manage, to say the least. However, studies indicate that when massage therapy is introduced to women’s prenatal care, hormone levels associated with relaxation and stress are significantly altered; leading to mood regulation and improved cardiovascular health. Hormones associated with stress (norepinephrine and cortisol) were reduced, and hormones associated with happiness (dopamine and serotonin) were more prominent. These changes in hormone levels also led to fewer complications during birth and fewer instances of newborn complications, such as low birth weight.
2. Reduced Swelling –
Reduced circulation and increased pressure on the major blood vessels by the heavy uterus can cause swelling of the joints, called Edema. Massage can help to stimulate soft tissues to reduce collection of fluids in swollen joints. This also improves the removal of tissue waste carried by the body’s lymph system.
3. Nerve Pain Improvement –
As the uterus rests on muscles of the pelvic floor and lower back, Sciatic nerve pain can be experienced late in pregnancy. The pressure of the uterus spreads tension to the muscles of the upper and lower leg, causing them to swell and put pressure on nearby nerves. Massage therapy addresses the inflamed nerves by helping to release the tension on nearby muscles.
Other potential benefits of prenatal massage include the reduction of stress, anxiety, muscle tension, headaches, and back and joint pain. As well as, improved circulation, oxygenation of soft tissues and muscles, and better sleep.
As with any therapeutic approach to pregnancy wellness, women should discuss massage with their prenatal care provider and become informed. And as always seek an appropriate certified prenatal massage therapist. Certified therapists have received training beyond the national standards for massage therapists and know how to address specific pregnancy and massage needs. They are aware of how to position you safely and prevent strain to the uterine ligaments. They are also able to watch for symptoms of blood clots and varicose veins.
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