Q - When can I begin massage therapy in my pregnancy?
The quick answer is ... soon as you know! If you are already receiving regular massage, share your news with your therapist at your next appointment - it will make our day! We adjust our work according to how you are feeling and any changes you may be experiencing - maybe nausea or smell sensitivities in the early weeks.
Our move to supported side-lying positioning will happen by 13 weeks or so and will continue into your post-partum year, in fact most women end up preferring this position for their massage long after their babies have grown. When positioned well - it is by far the best!
Q - What about those tables with a belly cut-out? Why don't you use those?
A face down or prone position on the table (cut-outs or not) re-creates the sway back or rotation of the pelvis common in pregnancy – the very position that is the cause of low back pain in the first place. As well, breasts may be tender so pressure there is not comfortable. Well-supported side-lying positioning and specific techniques that address the nervous system, muscles, joints and fascia is what makes this work so effective.
Long time clients will say that the work is intuitive, feels amazing and they feel the effects for days after the treatment. Adding some “ home work” for sitting, standing and sleeping postures and gait helps you to hang on to the changes in your body until your next appointment.
Q - Is massage safe for me and my baby?
Thoughtful, respectful, and skilled massage therapy during pregnancy, birth and the post partum days IS safe and actually beneficial for you and your baby.
We know that during pregnancy, massage can reduce stress, promoting a calming or relaxing effect on your nervous system and in the soft tissues throughout your body. Specific massage techniques can actually reduce many pregnancy discomforts including edema, varicose veins, physical pains and strains and help regulate blood pressure.
Generally pre-natal massage supports the body’s natural hormonal, respiratory, gastrointestinal, and urinary processes while helping you to develop the flexibility and body awareness to feel strong and well in pregnancy, birthing and the early mothering days. There is much evidence that supportive, effective, and nurturing touch through pregnancy fosters nurturing maternal touch and healthy bonding.
In the Post Partum days massage can help reduce pain from -and actually help- in the body's realignment and reorganization of its organs and tissues. Again, thoughtful, specific techniques can promote recovery from cesarean births including healing at the incision site. And, of course, massage helps you with the all the ways your body will adapt in the physical care of your new little one.
Q -How often should I come?
Many women schedule their massage at the same frequency as their midwife or doctor appointments, increasing frequency in the last 8 or 10 weeks of their pregnancy. Experience tells us we can't have too much massage - every day would be good!
Please call or email us with other questions you may have. Our collective 40 years plus experience will help us guide you to the information you need.
Source: Osborne C. Pre- and Perinatal Massage Therapy A Comprehensive Guide to Prenatal, Labor and Postpartum Practice 2cnd edition. 2012 Lippincott Williams and Williams. Pp21-22