Massage is now generally considered part of complementary and integrative medicine and is increasingly being offered for pregnancy. Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment during and after pregnancy.
Some of the many benefits of massage pre and post pregnancy are:
1. Helps reduce leg cramps
2. Helps reduce lower back and pelvic pain
3. Helps to reduce swelling in hands and feet
4. Reduces anxiety and depression
5. Helps with sleep
6. Helps reduce headaches and tension through shoulders and back due to breast feeding
7. Helps reduce general aches and pains associated with pregnancy
8. Regulates and reduces hormones such as norepinephrine and cortisol (hormones associated with stress) and promotes dopamine and serotonin levels (hormones associated with reducing stress)
Exercise Pre & Post Pregnancy
Generally, exercise is recommended and encouraged pre and post pregnancy unless otherwise stated by your obstetrician/doctor. You will find your energy levels will vary at different stages of your pregnancy and it is important to get plenty of sleep and rest when you are not feeling energetic. Creating a whole new person takes a lot of energy.
There are several exercise options you can do during your pregnancy to assist with muscle pains, cramping, weight control, birthing and general well-being.
Some of those are:
1. Yoga – making sure you get a clearance from your obstetrician and the yoga class is taken by a fully trained yoga teacher who has been trained in pregnancy yoga
2. Swimming – an excellent choice for swelling especially during summer months
3. Most hospitals have an exercise program which you can attend
4. Pilates is an excellent way to help regain your strength through the pelvic floor and as always, make sure the instructor is qualified in pregnancy Pilates
Note: After your baby is born you will be seen by a physio to explain what is happening with your post-baby body and given some exercises to do.
All No More Knots Clinics are equipped with special pregnancy tables to accommodate all stages of pregnancy and have therapists qualified in pregnancy massage. So, go ahead and book in for your pregnancy massage at one of our conveniently located clinics (Greenslopes, Taringa or Newmarket).
Written By, Tracy Warren (Senior Remedial Therapist)