How To Perform A Safe Pregnancy Massage?

Performing a safe pregnancy massage

Being pregnant brings a great deal of aches and discomforts, and a therapeutic massage is surely a moment of peace for the mother-to-be. Getting a pregnancy massage is calming and rejuvenating, especially among all the screams, swollen feet, and backaches. Perhaps the significant other notices all the pain and offers a neck and foot massage, which can greatly help. But proper pregnancy massage should be done very carefully and by a professional only.

What is a Pregnancy Massage (Prenatal Massage)?

In the line of integrative medicine, pregnancy massage, also known as prenatal massage, is actually physiotherapy, not a pampering service. It is always done by trained professionals with soft hands, minimal pressure, and skilful movements to different parts of the body. This massage is tailored according to a person’s individual needs to address all their tight spots and activate muscles, connective tissues, ligaments, and tendons.

It mainly involves around an hour of massage on a prenatal massage table designed to accommodate the pregnant belly. Some other professionals place women on their sides using special pillows for the massage session.

How to Perform a Safe Pregnancy Massage?

How to Perform a Safe Prenatal Massage

To get a safe and sound pregnancy massage, it is essential to be careful and follow some guidelines that will ensure the safety of both the mother and the baby. 

1. Consult with your Gynie or Medical Care Provider

Before getting a massage, it is really important to consult with the doctor and medical care provider, who helps the masseuse understand the condition and stage. Also, it will help them understand where they have to avoid massage and what are the dos and don’ts.

Doctors prefer not to allow massage or any physical activity before the first trimester, which is due to the high risk of miscarriage during the first 12 weeks. Hence, doctors do not approve this until you are close to 23-24 weeks.

2. Certified Prenatal Massage Therapist

Secondly, ensuring that the masseuse is trained and qualified in prenatal massage is crucial. It is very important only to seek the sessions from professional ones who have atleast national level certifications and years of experience as they know how to 

  • Better position the pregnant women
  • What massage techniques are suitable, and on which body parts
  • Knowledge about massage techniques can cause discomfort and illness
  • Prevent pressure on blood vessels and abdomen

Moreover, the prenatal massage therapist should know the mother’s medical history to avoid any potential risks and discomforts. In addition, ask any questions before and after the session you may have on the spot. 

3. Positioning

Although improper pregnancy massage techniques and positions can cause great discomfort, hence it is really important to be aware of all the potential hazards. For instance, lying on your belly and back can put pressure on the blood vessels, especially in the third trimester. 

The best and safest position for pregnant women is side-lying, ideally supported by pillows. This will decrease the discomfort and keep the baby safe in utero.

4. Avoid Certaining Areas

Massaging certain acupressure points is rumoured to increase discomfort and preterm labour. However, we have not yet found any evidence to support this rumour. Furthermore, during the pregnancy massage, be careful with the following body parts

  • Around Mother’s Belly: Avoid the belly and surrounding abdomen, which may lead to injury to the baby.
  • Legs: Also, avoid getting deep massages on the legs it may lead to blood clots due to lower blood pressure. Instead, there should be a very light pressure and strokes.

Finally, if you are experiencing any discomfort or pain during the session, communicate with your therapist as soon as possible.

5. Hygiene and Cleanliness

Spas or clinics should be hygienic and free of germs to avoid any risk of illness. Furthermore, they should have proper equipment to cater to pregnant women carefully and professionally. For example, medicated cushioning systems or tables are designed for pregnant women. 

6. Build partnership

After choosing a certified massage therapist, it is advised to build a partnership with them. Also, avoid frequent switching and prefer to get the message from a single one. This will help the massage therapist understand your needs and provide the best massage services. Regular visits with the same massage therapist are also important to ensure the best results. It is important to find a masseuse who makes you feel comfortable and is expert and professional. 

Recommended Reading: Is It Safe to Get a Massage While Pregnancy?

Benefits of Pregnancy Massage?

As the body is going through a lot of changes, which is a continuous process till delivery, the pain and distress can be alot to deal with. Here, pregnancy massage plays a great role, and women feel less stress, less pain, and less body tension. Furthermore, many studies prove the benefits of massage. Some of them are:

1. Reduces Muscle Pain

During pregnancy, as your baby grows, the body undergoes many changes, which causes discomfort. Getting a proper, careful massage on the lower back, feet, and neck aids in managing growing muscle pain.

2. Enhance Immune system

Massage enhances the immune system and helps women stay healthy and fit, which is really important for both mother and baby health.

3. Lowers the Depression

Depression and anxiety are very common problems in pregnant women, and pregnancy massage helps in combating these effectively. 

4. Massage helps in labour

According to conducted research, those women who receive massage in labour go through a minimal time period of labour. 

When to Avoid Getting Pregnancy Massages?

There are many doctors who recommend being more careful about getting any massage. Hence, make sure that your doctor gives the all-clear for the massage. But still, it is recommended to avoid getting pregnancy massage in the following conditions:

  • When you are feeling morning sickness 
  • There is a risk of miscarriage
  • When you have a high blood pressure
  • Also, when you have  a high risk of preterm labour

Sometimes, before giving a pregnancy massage, therapists require written consent from the doctor and written approval from the patient herself. 

The Bottom Line

The benefits of a prenatal massage suggest getting it to lighten the pain and soothe the mother-to-be’s journey. Whether it is a proper pregnancy massage or one by your partner, just make sure you have consulted with your gynie first. But it has to be with proper guidance and care, by only certified and trained professionals.

In addition, always use a lighter touch during the massage and avoid getting it on your back, stomach, and legs. Lastly, never forget to ask them to stop whenever it hurts.


by Alma Curry

Words that empower, inspire, and elevate your life. | Alma Curry | A Fitness & Spa author guiding you to a life of vitality and serenity. Follow for more.📚✨

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