Important Benefits of Prenatal Massage
When you’re pregnant, a prenatal massage is a must to keep you comfortable and healthy. Prenatal massages differ from regular massages in that they are tailored to a woman’s changing body. In particular, they target the areas where you have a lot of pain and tension, mitigating lower back and hip pain from the extra weight, or abdominal pain due to crowded organs. Most of all, prenatal massages work to keep the baby protected by adjusting your body to keep everything in the correct position. Here are a few of the most important reasons for getting a prenatal massage.
Being pregnant causes a lot of stress and you may be experiencing symptoms that include shallow breathing, a fast pulse, or blood pressure that's higher than normal. Getting a prenatal massage is one way to reduce these symptoms. Massages work to calm your body and promote the release of serotonin and dopamine, chemicals which improve mood and emotion. In fact, in a study of women who had a massage twice a week for a five-week period, many of them had lower levels of norepinephrine and cortisol, two of the main hormones associated with increased stress levels. With a more relaxed mood, you’ll have a much happier pregnancy as well as a decreased chance of problems during and after birth.
If you’ve ever been pregnant, you know just how swollen and bloated you can get around your joints. This is often caused by all the extra pressure in your body, putting more stress on your major blood vessels and decreasing circulation. Luckily, prenatal massage is a great way to combat that problem. Massage helps to circulate this collection of fluid, allowing it to be carried away naturally by your lymphatic system.
Decreased Nerve Pain
Having shooting sciatic nerve pain is extremely common in pregnancy, as the baby often compresses the sciatic nerve that runs along the lower back. This results in a stabbing ache that spreads across your torso, through your back, and down to your knee. While prenatal massage can’t do anything about the baby’s weight, it can help to relax the muscles surrounding the nerve. When these muscles are tense, they cause even more pressure. However, when they loosen up, some of the force on the nerve is reduced, providing some pain relief.
With so much extra weight in your belly, chances are you’ll begin to slouch a bit. With a prenatal massage, you can work to maintain your posture to prevent back pain and other issues. When you get a massage, it increases your muscle tone — helping you to stand up straighter and improve your ability to carry the baby’s weight without turning into a hunchback. In turn, this may help to reduce the number of back aches and spasms.
During prenatal massages, your massage therapists will take extra care to make sure your experience is a pleasant one. With their help, you can have a much more enjoyable pregnancy.