It is reported that up to 50% of expectant mothers experience some kind of back pain during their pregnancy. This is mainly due to changes in posture and one’s centre of gravity: if you imagine picking up a heavy box and holding it in front of you for a long time, you are slowly going to start leaning back and your shoulders will begin to roll forward. This causes certain muscles to become shorter and tighter, resulting in muscle pain. Pregnancy has the same effect but over a much longer period of time. Massage works to relax and lengthen muscles, and improve their ability to repair, thereby reducing pain.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
This is often closely linked with your posture and can affect the strength in your hands, causing pain and pins and needles in your thumb and first two fingers. Massage for the muscles which run along with the median nerve can help to significantly reduce the pain and tingly feeling, and restoring day-to-day function.
The increased blood volume in your body means that swelling in the arms and legs is common during pregnancy. This can interfere with wearing shoes and walking. Using a variety of methods of massage, we can help to reduce the swelling and increase the circulation in the limbs.
Swelling can also be caused by a condition called pre-eclampsia, so it’s important to see your doctor before you visit us if you have significant swelling or if you have not recently had a checkup with a doctor, midwife or other health professional.
With your body changing so much during pregnancy, it can be hard to adapt. Massage can really help you to reconnect with your body and ease muscular and nervous tension. It functions to release endorphins (the feel-good hormones) which enhance relaxation and improve sleep. There is growing research that supports the benefits of regular pre-natal massage as it is a safe, drug-free and relaxing way to relieve pain discomfort; and has the added benefit of giving a bit of time back to you and your baby. It can also help to restore function and movement after birth.
Don’t forget about you! Remember it is just as important to look after yourself once your baby is born! If you would like to book in for a pregnancy or post-natal massage with Alice, you can do so by calling us on 0450 062 223 or by clicking here.
Carly Rush - Exercise Physiologist