Pregnancy Massage Melbourne
Pregnancy massage has a long history in many cultures around the world. In countries such as Japan and Mexico, massage during pregnancy and even labour is deeply embodied in the normal care of pregnancy women. Pregnancy is an exciting time of change and growth but it challenges your body. Regular pregnancy massage supports and nourishes your physical and emotional wellbeing.
Imagine going through pregnancy feeling relaxed emotionally and physically. Pregnancy massage relaxes tension in your body, reducing aches and pains in muscles and joints. This improves your mood and comfort. You sleep better and your skin glows.
Be proactive about preparing for labour by tapping into your inner resources of strength and mindfulness. Regular meditative breathing brings calmness and control, accessing your energy and focus, excellent skills to have in your labour toolkit.
Massage also helps you understand and prepare your pelvic space for healthy birthing. By working on your posture and flexibility, your baby can find the best position for birth.
During labour, massage reduces the stress hormones and tension that interfere with the normal process of birth. You can improve your chance for a shorter and positive labour, with less need for interventions and medications.
At Nurtured Birth, we’re often asked the following questions about pregnancy massage:
Q: What’s the difference between regular and pregnancy massage?
A: Massage during pregnancy is modified to accommodate and support your changing body, to ensure you reap the benefits of massage safely.
In Australia, certified pregnancy massage therapists receive training beyond the national standards for massage therapists. They understand the pregnant body and how to address specific needs in pregnancy.
Q: Is massage during pregnancy safe?
A: Pregnancy massage is safe for most women but there are situations where this may not be the case. If you have certain health conditions or complications, discuss the safety of pregnancy massage with your midwife or doctor. This might include:
- High risk pregnancy conditions such as preeclampsia or placenta previa, high blood pressure
- Any abdominal pain
- Blood clots
- Previous pre-term labour
- Experiencing severe swelling or sudden, severe headaches.
Q: Can I have a massage in my first trimester of pregnancy?
A: Previously it was thought massage in the first trimester increased the risk of miscarriage but research hasn’t been able to reliably prove this. The first trimester does have the highest risk of miscarriage but massage is safe as long as it’s performed by a practitioner with specialised pregnancy massage training and skills. Both Sarah, Sharon and Katsu offer these skills in first trimester pregnancy massage. Jo offers massage from the second trimester onwards.
Q: Do I have to lie face down or on my back?
A: Nurtured Birth massage practitioners don’t use tables with holes for your belly as this can increase strain on ligaments and increase back pain. We also know lying flat on your back can cause pressure from your uterus and baby to press on the major vein in your back, causing low blood pressure and decrease circulation to you and your baby. A nourishing, relaxing massage is just as possible while you are lying on your side, allowing your spine and muscles to release tension.
Q: Can I have a massage close to my due date?
A: As long as you and baby are healthy and happy, massage up to and even beyond your due date is safe and have many benefits. Massage is a lush and lovely way to help your body ripen and prepare for birth. If you’re on bed rest or have any health conditions check with your care provider to see if pregnancy massage is suitable for you.
Q: Is it safe to have your feet massaged during pregnancy?
A: Pregnancy puts a lot of pressure on your feet and ankles and massage can help relieve pain and swelling. There are specific acupressure points on your feet and ankles that are actively worked on to bring on contractions. This can be really useful during induction massage or even labour, but we carefully avoid those areas until then.
Q: How often should I have a massage during pregnancy?
A: How frequently you have a pregnancy massage depends on you, as each woman and pregnancy is unique. If you want massage to be a central part of your pregnancy care, we suggest you talk to one of our knowledgable practitioners to find out what would best suit you. We can tailor massage therapy with our osteopath to ensure your body is well supported during the challenges of pregnancy.
As a general rule, most women in the first trimester will have a massage once a month, then 2-3 times during the remainder of pregnancy. In the last month of pregnancy, longer and more focused treatment may be necessary to support your body.
Q: Is it safe for you to massage my belly?
A: Most massage practitioners will avoid massaging pregnancy bellies until after the first trimester. While it is safe to do so as your uterus is still small and tucked into the pelvis, many women feel anxious about the risk of miscarriage and prefer not to have their abdomen massaged. During massage on the belly we use light, circular strokes to help circulation and promote that pregnancy glow. Later in pregnancy, massage can help your baby to find the optimal position for birth.
Put yourself into the hands of experienced therapists with extensive knowledge of pregnancy and labour. Your treatment will be tailored especially for you.
Nurtured Birth offers pregnancy massage at The Mother Baby Centre at Cabrini Hospital in Malvern and our clinic in Windsor.
For information about prices and length of treatment please visit this page.