During pregnancy, woman’s body undergoes numerous changes and is constantly adapting to the different stages and demands of pregnancy. Pregnant women can often feel a lot of physical and emotional pressure when they carry a baby, as they are suddenly responsible for the lives and health of two people. This can result in feelings of increased stress and worry.
Massage produces many beneficial effects, both physical and psychological, and helps the body to rebalance and function more effectively.
Pregnancy Massage involves a combination of techniques such as Swedish massage, Acupressure, Deep Tissue and Indian Head Massage, Acupressure and gentle Lymphatic Drainage.
It can be carried out as a full body massage including back, abdomen (optional), arms, legs, feet, or you could just choose one part of the body such as upper or lower back.
Two positions that can be used
- Patient lays on her side - supported by pillows and towels under her head, tummy and knees for her comfort - to enable access to the back. Patient will be properly covered at all times, except for the area being massaged.
- A seated position can also be used with appropriate supports and the patient’s head and arms resting on the massage table. This position also allows good access to the neck, back and shoulders especially where lying down feels uncomfortable.
The massage can be done directly on the skin with oil or just through the clothes, according to preference.
Pregnancy massage can be carried out from week 13 of pregnancy onwards.
Before the first massage takes place, you will be asked to complete a questionnaire giving details of the pregnancy and general health, including any problems or complications.
Prior to the receipt of any treatment, the practitioner will discuss reasons not to treat (also known as red flags) and contraindications to massage to ensure it is safe for treatment to proceed.
• Severe abdominal pain
• Severe swelling, high blood pressure or sudden, severe headaches
• Extreme itching
• Persistent oedema (swelling)
• Blood clotting conditions
• Uncontrolled gestational diabetes
• Cramping, bleeding or abdominal/pelvic pain
• High blood pressure (Hypertension)
• Any vaginal bleeding/leaking
• High risk pregnancy
• Pelvic or abdominal pain or cramping
• Deep vein thrombosis (blood clots)
• Reduced foetal movement in the last 8/10 hours
• Severe nausea or vomiting
• Regular uterine contractions before 37 weeks
I would encourage you to speak to your midwife or GP if you are experiencing any of the above. If you are unsure whether it is safe for you to receive pregnancy massage, please discuss with your midwife or GP prior to booking an appointment.