Healthy Body, Healthy Baby
Pregnancy is a time of tremendous musculoskeletal, physical and emotional change, and yet is a condition of wellness. The purpose of Pregnancy Massage is to maintain the state of wellness by dealing with both the normal and any abnormal changes that occur during the time of pregnancy. Ideally, there should also be a comprehensive post-pregnancy treatment plan that focus on potential lower back and ligamentous problems, enabling the client to regain the proper posture and biomechanics.
Each stage of the pregnancy presents its own set of changes. Following is a brief outline of what the client can expect during each of these stages. The following lists are indicating the possible conditions that each woman may experience but does not mean that each pregnancy will have all these symptoms. Following the descriptions of what conditions are normally experienced during a pregnancy, we outline other conditions that may be encountered, so that if they do happen you will be aware of them and know what to do.
First Trimester (0-12 weeks)
- Poor appetite
- Weight gain
- Frequent urination
- Breast tenderness
- Swings in emotions are also possible
Second Trimester (13-26 weeks)
- Nausea and fatigue have mostly disappeared.
- Increased energy
- weight gain
- postural problems (for example backache, abdominal muscle spasm, and if previously present, an increase in contractured iliotibial band, hyperlordosis, scoliosis and pesplanus)
- varicose veins or sore feet can also occur
Third Trimester (26 weeks to labour)
- Breast engorgement
- Shallow breathing
- Edema (water retention) especially in hands and feet
- Frequent urination
- Swings in emotion may occur
- Second trimester postural problems may be exacerbated with increased weight gain.
Aims of Pregnancy Massage
The primary long term aim of pregnancy massage is to help the woman to return to her pre-pregnancy state of health and posture as soon as possible. To accomplish this there are certain conditions that must be addressed during the pregnancy and still other thins that must be addressed after birth. The short term aims of pregnancy massage are 3 fold:
- Asses the client for signs of distress in pregnancy (eclampsia).
- Treat muscle problems by reducing trigger points, spasming and hypertonicity of muscles in the low back, focusing on quadratus laborum, erector spinae and gluteals.
- Treat presenting problems as the occur:
- abdominal massage to reduce constipation
- hydrotherapy and lymphatic drainage to help reduce breast pain due to congestion and any accompanying conditions (e.g. carpal tunnel) that develop.
The Long Term Aim of Pregnancy Massage
The Long Term aim of pregnancy massage is to help restore ideal biomechanics and muscle strength after delivery. In difficult deliveries involving a lot of ‘back labour’ this can lead to a long lasting back pain. Although the exact mechanism of injury is unclear, the possibility of lumbo-sacral sprain or sacro-iliac sprain is high. A thorough postural assessment must be done in order to determine the source of the pain. Another problem faced by some postpartum women is depression or “Postpartum Blues”. Although causes may differ, all can benefit from the relaxing break that the massage treatment affords.
Understanding Your Treatment
As with all massage treatments, the client has the right to refuse any treatment that she is not comfortable with. She is encouraged to ask the therapist about any part of the suggested treatment plan that she does not understand. After all the goal of every treatment is to help the client feel better after the massage than she felt before the massage and this is best accomplished if the client is well informed and understands what and why the therapist is doing the techniques being used on her.
Your Comfort First
To make the massage appointment as relaxing as possible, we use the Body Cushion on top of the table. This should allow the client to lie face down for all her massage treatments throughout her pregnancy. When lying on her back in the later stages of pregnancy, the client will be inclined slightly to one side to prevent the uterus from coming to rest on top of the aorta.
Baby Massage Lessons
After the birth the new mother can learn how to give her baby a baby massage, this creates a special bonding between the baby and the mom. This has been used in other countries such as India for many years and has shown to help the child become more relaxed and learn faster than those babies who are not massaged.
Book Your Appointment (519) 884-9174
Brian Sklar, RMT, BTh, BES, BEd
“I have been working in the area of massage therapy and related modalities since 1992. The lonSpa treatments are the fastest way I have found to get toxins out without causing a healing crisis.”
Diane Sklar, CCH, CEC.
“I have been involved with colon therapy and cleansing since 1995. I see the lonSpa Treatments as an excellent way to compliment the colon cleansing that I do and make the toxic removal more complete.”