Pregnancy comes with a great reward at the end, but getting to that joyous conclusion can seem like a lifetime. As the body changes to accommodate the growing baby, common aches and pains like to tag right along with the growing belly.
But, as the baby grows, so does the discomfort. According to Babycenter.com, the growing uterus and hormonal changes are a huge cause for an aching back during pregnancy. But, that’s not all that causes the pain. According to WebMD, back pain during pregnancy can also be attributed to:
As the mom enters the second or third trimester, chances are she has experienced some moderate-to-severe middle or lower back pain. (In fact, two-thirds of all pregnant women experience back pain during their pregnancy). Luckily, there are easy, at-home massage tricks that can help alleviate some of this pain and discomfort.
The Power of Pre-Natal Massage
While there are many ways to alleviate pregnancy-associated back pain (acupuncture, exercise, stretching, etc.) one common method is through the power of pre-natal massage. Aside from helping with sore muscles and an aching back, Americanpregnancy.org sites pre-natal massage as a great fix to:
Reduced back pain
Reduced joint pain
Reduced muscle tension and headaches
Reduced stress and anxiety
Improved oxygenation of soft tissues and muscles
It’s amazing the benefits of massage. Now, let’s get started!
Prenatal Massage at Home
As the partner, husband, or friend to the mom, there are a few things that need to happen prior to the massage taking place. Before beginning the massage, make sure mom is in the right position(s):
Place a pillow between mom’s legs, lie on your left side, and place a pillow under your head. If the bed is too soft, use the floor for added support.
You can also sit in a semi-reclined postion, such as a reclining chair, and place a small pillow or folded blanked under your right hip. This will reduce pressure to your circulatory system. As with anything, there are precautions that need to be minded. Remember, prenatal massage is different than a regular massage because the way a mom’s body works and moves during pregnancy is different than its regular state. Please follow these simple massage guidelines to ensure the safety of mom and baby. (If you have any questions, please contact a professional at Becoming Mom Spa + Ultrasound.)
Avoid any essential or massage oils. Many are deemed unsafe after the first trimester and should be avoided throughout the pregnancy.
Stay clear of pressure points and uterine ligaments (do not place any pressure on the abdomen).
Drink plenty of water before and after the massage.
Discontinue if there is any pain or discomfort and always call your doctor if you think you are in labor or if something is wrong.
Once mom is in position, and you have reviewed the precautions, it is time to start the massage. Here are the top three pregnancy-associated pains and the massage technique best to remedy them:
Begin at the nape of the neck and continue gently massaging down to the hips. Then continue moving back up the neck on the opposite side of the spine and incorporate both sides of the spine into the massage technique. Stay clear of the spine itself.
Assist in reducing strain on the buttocks by massaging a soft fist gently into the bone (at the base of the spine) and avoid moving down far enough to involve touching the tailbone.
Use small circular motions and begin where the foot meets the calf. Slowly work your way up to the thigh and finish where the thigh meets buttocks. Always work from the foot up and avoid massaging the inner thigh to help relieve swelling in the legs.
Becoming Mom Spa + Ultrasound is Here for You
While it is easy to imitate these massage techniques at home, having the assistance of a hired professional is always best. At Becoming Mom Spa for example, we have staffed our team with the best professionals in the industry, targeted at caring for women during their pregnancy and even beyond.