Therapists claim that massage is an excellent way to boost your overall health. But, is the therapy appropriate for an expectant mother? We have highlighted its benefits and limitations to help you decide.
The benefits of prenatal massage
1. Prenatal massage alleviates pregnancy-related stress
Prenatal massage reduces the production of cortisol, a hormone that induces stress and anxiety when produced in excess amounts. Furthermore, massage stimulates the production of serotonin and dopamine. These ‘feel good’ hormones collaborate to relieve stress and depression.
2. Prenatal massage reduces edema
An expectant mom’s uterus exerts pressure on the vessels that carry blood, lymph, and other fluids to or from the limps. This stress leads to the accumulation of fluids in your feet and or ankles, consequently leading to edema. Prenatal massage combats edema by stimulating the circulation of blood and lymph.
3. Prenatal relieves sciatica nerve pain
Sciatica nerve pain occurs when the uterus compresses the sciatica nerve located on your lower back and buttocks. The prolonged pressure results in inflammation and irritation. Regular massage saves your nerves from the pressure, swelling, and pain.
4. Prenatal massage reduces back pain
Have you been struggling with back pain associated with pregnancy? If yes, prenatal massage would save you from the distress. The therapy reduces muscle strain on your back, the primary cause of back pain. As well, prenatal massage eases the pain by improving range of motion and boosting blood circulation to your back muscles.
5. Prenatal massage improves sleep quality
Prenatal massage can help you fight insomnia, a significant discomfort affecting many expectant mothers. How can massage help you get better sleep? Prenatal massage induces relaxation, reduces anxiety, and it combats fatigue. Stress, fatigue, and muscle tension are the major causes of insomnia during pregnancy.
The limitations of prenatal massage
1. Prenatal massage can lead to miscarriage during the first trimester
Doctors say that prenatal massage may lead to miscarriage and other complications during the first trimester. On that account, you may have to wait till the second trimester to start your massage sessions. As an alternative, you can search around for alternatives that could help you ease pregnancy discomforts that appear in your first trimester.
2. Prenatal massage might be unsafe for people with some chronic conditions
Prenatal massage might be dangerous for people living with asthma, pulmonary embolism, and hypertension. Also, the therapy is risky for expectant mothers carrying a high-risk pregnancy and those recovering from a recent surgery.
Prenatal massage is an effective way to manage various discomforts resulting from pregnancy. It reduces back pain, relieves sciatica nerve pain, and it combats edema. Moreover, this therapy helps you fight stress and anxiety. However, prenatal massage might be dangerous during the first trimester.