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The following Meditation for Mindful Eating, is a guest post by Meredith DeGroot, a spa director of spa810 located in Ankeny, IA.
Benefits of Prenatal Massage
Pregnancy can be a very exciting time for women. However, with new life comes new discomforts and health concerns for the expecting mother. Prenatal massage, when done correctly, offers many health benefits for a pregnant woman. If you are expecting, here are a few benefits of prenatal massage to help you feel better about booking that first appointment.
Nurture Mental Health
While pregnancy is an enjoyable experience for most women, others feel ridden with anxiety, depression, or fear. Studies have been shown that prenatal massage can help to reduce these negative thoughts and feelings. If you are feeling stressed, anxious, or worried throughout your pregnancy it is always advisable to speak to your doctor about any concerns. For an easy, natural fix to common pregnancy worries, prenatal massage is a great tool to help alleviate these issues.
Promote Physical Health
Few women can deny that pregnancy really takes a toll on your body. Have you been having a variety of aches and pains and can't seem to get comfortable? Treating yourself to a prenatal massage is an excellent way to unwind, distress, and get your muscles feeling better again. It also has many other physical health benefits such as improved sleep (something all pregnant women need) and a reduction of uncomfortable swelling and decreased nerve pain. Massage has an immense amount of physical benefits for you as an expecting mom.
Out of whack hormones can be credited for the havoc they can wreak on stressed out a soon to be mom. If you feel like this could be you, prenatal massage has been shown to help regulate hormones and promote relaxation. Studies have concluded that upon receiving a massage, the hormones that help encourage the body to relax are effectively altered to help promote a pregnant woman's mood and even her cardiovascular health. Consider receiving a prenatal massage to help promote your overall health and well-being during this stressful time.
Help with Swelling
Another uncomfortable symptom associated with pregnancy is edema, or swollen joints. This is caused by the pressure that is placed on the body by the growing baby and reduced pressure in the body. By reducing fluids through tissue stimulation, swelling is decreased and lymph is more effectively removed from the body. Massage is a wonderful way to relax and enjoy the benefits of decreased swelling.
Sciatica is a very painful condition caused by pressure placed on the sciatic nerve. This condition is more common during the later stages of pregnancy as the growing baby places stress on the lower back and pelvic region. Prenatal massage can help to relieve this stress by reducing inflammation of the nerves and many women have benefited greatly from receiving prenatal massages to ease this pain and discomfort. When making your appointment with a massage therapist, make sure you inform them of any pain you may be having associated with you sciatic nerve so they can customize your treatment to help alleviate this discomfort and pain.
The benefits of prenatal massage are seemingly endless. These are just a few of the other potential benefits:
- Improvement in sleep quality
- Reduce tension in the muscles
- Reduce headaches
- Reduction of anxiety, stress, and other mental conditions
- Diminished back pain
- Reduction of joint pain
- Improved circulation
Pregnancy requires a lot of monitoring and observation, as you have likely found out through your seemingly endless doctor's appointments. This pertains to prenatal massage as well. You should always speak to a doctor and your massage therapist about any conditions you may have that could pose problems during your prenatal massage. A few of the conditions mentioned below are not compatible with receiving a prenatal massage without the approval of your doctor first:
- Pregnancy induced hypertension
- History of pre-term labor
- Recently delivered a child
- High blood pressure
- Severe headaches
- Severe swelling
While many massage therapists will not provide treatment to a pregnant woman during the first trimester because of the increased risk for suffering from miscarriage, it is generally accepted as a safe practice in all three pregnancy trimesters. As with any medical treatment, necessary precautions need to be taken during your pregnancy and it is always best to get cleared by your doctor.
Are you expecting a new arrival soon? If so, consider talking with your doctor about prenatal massage and if you are a good candidate for this service. From improved sleep to reduction in swelling and tension, there are many different reasons you should consider receiving a prenatal massage.
Guest Author: Meredith DeGroot