woman laying on a massage table outside, getting a pregnancy massage from a threapist

Pregnancy massages: what they are, and how they can help

A pregnancy massage is a pregnancy-specific massage performed by a specially-trained therapist, designed to help women manage certain symptoms and feel better overall during their pregnancy. 

How is a pregnancy massage different?

Pregnant women may not be able to lie comfortably on their stomachs like one would for a normal massage. Because of this, most pregnancy massage therapists will probably have the expecting mother lie on her side, using pillows for support.

A pregnancy massage is also helpful and different because it can be tailored specifically to your needs. It’s not news to you that your body is changing, and different from how it was when you weren’t pregnant. And any massage that you get during pregnancy should reflect this change. Massage therapists who are certified in prenatal massage will be able to relax certain muscles, encourage circulation, and help relieve tension in certain parts of the body that are affected by pregnancy. In other words, a certified prenatal massage therapist will be able to design a massage that is specifically relaxing and safe for your body, right now.

How can a pregnancy massage help?

Like any other massage, a pregnancy massage is sure to help you relax and get comfortable like little else in the world can. Pregnancy is a time of body-wide soreness, so a good massage can do wonders to make you feel fresh again. A pregnancy massage can also greatly help you de-stress, which is crucial during pregnancy for a number of reasons, not least of which is your baby’s health and proper development. Pregnancy massages may also help relieve some of the discomfort of headaches and backaches, although this is unproven.

How do I find a specially-trained massage therapist?

Before you consider a prenatal massage, make sure to speak to your healthcare provider – depending on how far you are in pregnancy, they might have some recommendations about the positions you should be in during the massage. Do research online, or talk to friends, family, and your healthcare provider about any certified  massage therapists that they may know, particularly ones with certificates in prenatal massage – they will know your body best! You can also ask any general massage therapists that you know if they have any experience in pregnancy massages.

You can expect to pay about $80-$100 for a pregnancy massage.

Read more
  • T Field, et al. “Pregnant women benefit from massage therapy.” J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol. 20(1):31-8. Web. Mar 1999.
  • Julie Howell. “Prenatal health through massage therapy: for women and their babies.” TheFreeLibrary. Farlex, Inc., 2017. Web.
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