Many women can benefit from a therapeutic massage during pregnancy. Massage may relax the muscles in your sore back and sore hips, and simply make you feel more comfortable. If you have never had a massage during pregnancy, you might want to consider trying this for yourself, after you have gained the approval of your physician. Before you sit in the massage chair or lie down on the table, keep the following six "Dos and Don'ts" in mind:
1. DO ask for unscented oils or lotions: Some scented essential oils such as rosemary and peppermint may lead to premature uterine contractions during early pregnancy. If your massage therapist uses scented lotions or oils during massage, you might want to err on the side of caution and skip the fragrance altogether.
2. DON'T Lie flat on your back while having a massage: Doing so may cause excessive pressure, increasing the risk of developing a dangerously low blood pressure. Your massage therapist may provide you with a body pillow or a soft cushion to alleviate the pressure and provide support.
3. DO let your massage therapist know which position you find most comfortable: For instance, you might prefer sitting in a massage chair. Maybe you'll feel more comfortable in a semi-reclining chair. Perhaps lying on your side makes you feel most relaxed. Some massage therapists that offer prenatal massage use a special table with a cut-out for the belly, allowing the individual to lie face down. Whatever your personal preference may be, your therapist will accommodate your requests, so don't be shy about speaking up.
4. DON'T consume large quantities of liquids before your massage: If you've never had a prenatal message, you may be surprised to learn that this type of massage may last and hour or more; therefore, you may not be able to use the rest room during this time.
5. DO ask your therapist for massage techniques you may perform at home: For instance, you might be told to ease your aching back by relaxing your back onto a tennis ball. This may relieve tension and improve circulation. Perhaps your therapist will demonstrate how to perform a scalp massage to relieve a headache.
6. DON'T neglect to inform your massage therapist about any medical issues you have: For instance, do you have hypertension, asthma or gestational diabetes? Do you have skin abrasions, open sores or eczema? Your therapist needs to know, as you may not be an ideal candidate for massage during your pregnancy.
Contact a center like Gulf Coast Massage & Skin Care for more information.