The Pros and Cons of Massage During Pregnancy

Getting massage is not just a very relaxing experience but also offers many benefits and advantages. Not only does it improve the blood circulation but also helps to relieve stress, eliminate certain health issues and provide relief from aches and pains.

But is taking massage the best idea during pregnancy? Well, doing so can have both positives and negatives and before you opt for a massage during this phase, you must know both the pros and cons. The following is a list of the various pros and cons of massage during pregnancy.

pros and cons of massage during pregnancy

Pros of Massage During Pregnancy

  • Hormone regulation-one of the biggest benefits of taking massage during pregnancy is that it helps to regulate your hormones and hence provides relief from stress and mood swings which are related to these hormones. Pregnancy massage can also help to increase the levels of dopamine and serotonin which helps to reduce complications during labor.
  • Reduces swelling-another major advantage of massage during pregnancy is that it can greatly address the swelling which pregnant women usually complain of. This happens due to increase in circulation during pregnancy and more pressure on the blood vessels.  Through massage, it also becomes possible to stimulate the soft tissues and thus water retention in the joints can also be reduced.
  • Reduction in pains and aches-during pregnancy, a woman may experience pains and aches in different parts of the body including muscles and joints. A massage can really prove helpful in relieving her of these pains and aches and this is another positive point associated with it. There are special prenatal massages which are especially meant to address these issues and can be taken from professional therapists.
  • Others-some of the other benefits of having massage during pregnancy include lowered anxiety, improved sleep and overall improvement in mood.

Cons of Massage During Pregnancy

  • Risk of blood clots-what a massage does is that it leads to a sudden increase in the blood circulation in the legs and other body parts. In some cases, such sudden changes can lead to the risk of blood clots in the lower legs, mostly in inner thighs and calves. This is why, very light strokes and pressure must be used during massage and it must only be taken from a professional and experience therapists.
  • Risk of miscarriage-another major negative point associated with massage during pregnancy is the risk of miscarriage. This may especially be the case if massage is taken during the first trimester. There is no direct link that has been established to prove this but in some cases, massage can indirectly lead to such a situation.

Some of the types of massages that must be avoided on the legs during pregnancy include deep tissue massage, cross fiber fiction, deep acupressure, percussive tapping and some others. All the leg massage movement and strokes should move up towards the direction of the heart and not otherwise.  The pressure applied on abdomen must be very light and gentle.

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