Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Benefits of Prenatal Massage

Expectant moms experience unique physical and emotional changes that occur as a result of increased weight, shifting posture, and adjusting hormone levels. While this is a beautiful period of heightened expectation and joy, mothers-to-be also endure heightened physical discomfort that ranges from muscular tension and headaches to pressure on the knees.

Prenatal massage is a natural, touch therapy treatment aimed at alleviating these and other pregnancy related symptoms.

Experienced therapists choose techniques that are safe and effective for pregnant women. Prenatal massage offers a wide range of benefits, which include the following:

•Eases backaches, headaches, shoulder and neck aches that may be caused by muscle tension and shifts in posture to accommodate increasing weight
•Decreases pain in the pelvic/hip area
•Increases circulation
•Improves digestion
•Reduces fatigue
•Improves skin elasticity that can help reduce stretch marks
•Helps reduce swelling in such places as hands and lower legs
•Can alleviate the stress on weight-bearing joints, like the knees, which are impacted by the extra weight of a growing baby
•Promotes relaxation and deep breathing
•Helps stabilize hormone levels by lessening anxiety

Taking time for yourself during pregnancy can be uplifting emotionally. The soothing essence of massage allows pregnant moms to unwind and feel serene, healthy, and comforted during a period of added physical and emotional stress.

Some women also choose to incorporate elements of massage during childbirth to cope with delivery. Massage therapy can also be a therapeutic treatment after pregnancy as your body returns to its normal state, and you begin your exciting life with baby. New moms are also learning how to bring the benefits of touch therapy to their children through infant massage classes.

All expectant mothers should check with their doctors prior to getting a massage. If you have diabetes or high blood pressure, or are on the early stages of pregnancy, pre-natal massage may not be recommended. It is important to share information about your condition and your preferences with your massage therapist when you arrive for your appointment. The massage therapist will adjust your prenatal massage to make it as soothing and as useful as possible based on your personal needs and preferences.

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