Pregnancy can be a beautiful time for a woman and it can also be a horribly uncomfortable time. Every woman has a different experience throughout her own pregnancy, labor and postpartum journey, but one thing is certain for all women: your body changes. These changes are big and they happen relatively quickly. Your center of gravity changes, your temperature, your heart rate, your hormones are going haywire, your sleep patterns are altered, and your appetite varies. Your body is doing things it has never done and this can be hard to accept and integrate into the pre-existing idea you had of yourself.
This is where massage therapy comes in, as a massage therapist, I can help bridge the gap between all of these emotional and physical changes from day 1 of your pregnancy (dispelling pregnancy massage myths). Some moms are hesitant to receive prenatal massage and worry about their massage therapist causing harm to them or their baby. I have advanced training from the San Francisco School of Massage in prenatal and postpartum massage. There is no way that I can cause a miscarriage, premature labor or cause any harm to mother or child. I consistently check in with my clients about their health and any medical issues that may arise during the pregnancy and postpartum journey in order to provide a safe and effective massage. I am aware of the reflexology points that are thought to induce labor and avoid applying direct pressure to them. I also do not work on the inner leg to avoid dislodging blood clots. If you ever have any questions or concerns please email me with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
One of my main goals with prenatal and postpartum massage is to relax the nervous system and allow for some much needed quality rest. I prop by prenatal and postpartum clients on their sides surrounded by pillows to hug, rest their head and belly on for support and to prop up their legs to alleviate edema. This position is the safest and comfortable for most pregnant women. I do not use pregnancy pillows that allows clients to lay on their stomach because suspending the belly in that way stretches the intrauterine ligaments that hold the uterus in place and can also cause intrauterine pressure which may compress the vena cava restricting blood flow to your baby and will make you short of breath, dizzy and nauseated. By placing my clients on their side and creating the safest environment for mother and child, your body can focus on getting rest, healing and functioning at its optimum. When you are healthy and happy, so is your baby.
Do not begin to think that prenatal and postpartum massage rely only on gentle and relaxing techniques of massage like Swedish or craniosacral. Deep tissue, stretching, and myofascial release are also amazing techniques for alleviating aching muscles due to changes in body shape and joint laxity. This can also help retain balance and posture as a woman's center of gravity changes. As long as these techniques are all done in a controlled, slow and nurturing manner that does not cause pain, they will very beneficial to mother and child.
While prenatal massage is regularly talked about, I have a few words on why postpartum massage is equally as important. Don't forget that pregnancy is a marathon and then there is the incredible task of going through labor which may also involve major surgery (c-section). After all of that, the body needs to heal and slowly return to its normal state; this time period is often referred to as the 4th trimester. It usually takes joints, organs, and overstretched abdominal muscles about 3 months to return to their original state. The rest of the body may take longer, but now is the time to get acquainted with this new body. Massage can help you reconnect with your body while also alleviating and releasing muscular tension.
So what are you waiting for? Book a prenatal or postpartum massage for yourself or your loved one. Not only are my prices similar to most spas in San Francisco, I also offer house calls so you don't even need to put on real pants.