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What is Pregnancy Massage and why is it important?

Pregnancy massage is massage therapy specifically tailored for the expectant mother's needs. Pregnancy massage is also referred to as pre-natal massage. The mother's body must be properly positioned and supported during the massage, using pillows and padding. Proper positioning ensures comfort and safety for the mother and baby.

During pregnancy, weight shifts drastically in a woman's body. Weight to the belly puts more strain on the back. Pregnancy can also be a very stressful time emotionally. Studies show that during pregnancy stress can negatively impact the health and well being of both mom and baby. Some of the effects of stress on pregnancy can include increased heart rate and blood pressure, decreased blood supply to the uterus, lower infant birth weight, and increased postpartum complications. Massage helps combat many of the complications caused by high stress lifestyles. Pregnancy massage as well as postpartum massage provide women with the opportunity to relax and be fully cared for in a natural manner without medication.

What are the benefits of pregnancy massage?

Pregnancy massage has been found to reduce stress, decrease swelling in the arms and legs, and relieve aches and pains in muscles and joints. Massage also lends to circulatory support to reduce the possibility of problems with swelling, varicose veins, and leg cramps. It is a popular complementary therapy for back pain during pregnancy, when choices for pain relief, such as medication, are often limited. Massage increases blood circulation and allows the expectant mother to relax, in turn allowing her to also sleep better.

Prenatal massage does more than benefit the mother. Everything a pregnant woman does from her diet and fitness to her relaxation and relative state of contentment - also directly affects the child she is carrying. Study after study has proven that calmness in the mother leads to healthier in-utero development. The human touch of a caring massage therapist can be comforting and provide emotional support during pregnancy as well.

What are some of the precautions of pregnancy massage?

1) Don't begin prenatal massage therapy until the first trimester has been completed. The increased circulation flow with massage may cause dizziness, and add to existing morning sickness.
2) Pressure points on both sides of the ankle and the webbing between the thumb and index finger are to be avoided. These areas are known as "reflexology points," and are believed that if sustained pressure is held on those points, they could activate labor too early.
3) Few insurance companies cover the costs of prenatal massage therapy. That being said, some insurance companies do provide allowances for massage. Be sure to check your plans policies regarding massage and reimbursement.


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Gift certificates make a great gift for any Expectant Mother!

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