Massage during Pregnancy

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First of all, it just makes sense. Massage therapy during pregnancy is appropriate for tight muscles that are in partial spasm and are producing aching (or sometimes sharp) pain. Stiffness is often present as well. What pregnant woman doesn’t experience this at some point? The muscles are fatigued from working harder while carrying more weight in increasingly awkward positions. And if you have a history of musculoskeletal pain before becoming pregnant, you are more likely to have it during those 9 months.

Now for the first thing you probably didn’t know:

Massage therapy may be covered by your health insurance. Some insurance policies cover it. Some don’t. It depends on whether it it considered a “covered benefit.” And it has to be performed at a healthcare provider’s office who is a participating provider for your health insurance company.

Massage during pregnancy is performed mostly in the side lying position with the use of supporting pillows.

Is it worth the time and trouble to go to a massage therapist during pregnancy?

Absolutely. Massage relieves pain and stiffness. It is a natural healthcare method which relieves the effects of stress and promotes relaxation. Massage makes life easier during daily activities, but it also:

1)Prepares the pelvis for an easier pregnancy and birth with better muscle tone
2)Decreases abnormal tension of the muscles supporting the uterus which can cause problems such as abnormal fetal position at birth – especially important if you feel pulling or straining in the abdomen while stretching
3)Minimizes likelihood of medical intervention with drugs and surgery

Something else you may not know:

Chiropractic care using the Activator Method is a great complement to prenatal massage. Activator Method combined with massage melts away muscle tension like nothing else.

With the Activator Method there is “no cracking, popping or twisting” associated with traditional chiropractic treatment methods. Instead, a hand held instrument called an Activator uses a controlled, fast thrust which is comfortable for patients.

And chiropractic care during pregnancy is safe. Results from a soon to be published study involving several hundred pregnant women receiving chiropractic care indicated no adverse effects. The only complications were slight soreness after the first treatment in a handful of patients which was was resolved by the second visit. These research results were initially presented by Dr. Jeanne Ohm, a chiropractic researcher and instructor (who is also in private practice) at the American College of Nurse Midwives annual meeting in Boston, May 2008.

Here are some recommended action steps if you want to receive massage and/or Activator Method chiropractic care while pregnant:

check to see if massage therapy is a covered benefit of your health insurance plan. The front desk staff at a healthcare provider’s office can help you with this.
do a Google search using the terms “massage” and the name of your community; or “massage” and “chiropractic” to find providers near you.

Massage during pregnancy is helpful for most women. When combined with Activator Method chiropractic care, it is even more effective at making life easier while pregnant, including making delivery safer.

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