Pregnancy is a time of excitement and joy, but it also takes a toll on a woman’s body and can elevate stress levels. Having a regular massage can help manage stress while offering a range of other benefits. Here is why you should include pregnancy massage in your self-care plan.
5 Benefits of Pregnancy Massage
Reduce fluid retention
Pregnant women may experience swelling in their ankles. This happens because a woman’s blood volume can rise by almost 60% during pregnancy, which increases fluid retention and puts a load on the lymphatic system. A pregnancy massage will stimulate the soft tissue, reducing fluid build up and helping the lymphatic system remove excess fluid.
Ease lower back pain
During pregnancy, hormones are produced that can cause changes to joints and ligaments around the pelvis. This in turn puts stress on other structures and joints, which may result in lower back pain. Massage can help get the blood flowing so muscle groups will work more effectively.
Alleviate nerve pain
Many women experience nerve pain as the baby grows. It can involve the sciatic nerve and feels like a sharp pain that shoots from the lower back, to the hamstring and lower limb, and down to the foot. Massaging the lower limbs and glutes can release surrounding muscles, lessening the pressure and tightness around the sciatic nerve.
Improve carpal tunnel syndrome
The carpal tunnels are found in the palm side of the wrist and house several nerves, blood vessels and tendons to the hands. During pregnancy, excess fluid (oedema) builds up in the wrists, causing many women to experience carpal tunnel syndrome. This can lead to numbness, pins and needles or painful, stiff hands. A pregnancy massage will reduce the muscular tenderness and release fluid.
Relieve headaches and migraines
Hormonal changes during pregnancy can cause frequent headaches and migraines for pregnant women. A massage will reduce muscle tension and boost circulation, helping to relieve your pain.
Pregnancy massage isn’t for everyone. We recommend you check with your GP to see if a pregnancy massage if safe for you. To ensure your baby is kept safe, massages should only be undertaken after 12 weeks.
Contact Sports Focus Physiotherapy today to book your pregnancy physiotherapy session with one of our Women’s Health Physios.