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Prenatal massage is therapeutic bodywork that focuses on the special needs of the mother-to-be as her body goes through the dramatic changes of pregnancy. It enhances the function of muscles and joints, improves circulation and general body tone, and relieves mental and physical fatigue. The gentle, noninvasive approach of prenatal massage can ease discomfort associated with pregnancy, help the mother-to-be prepare for labor and give her nurturing emotional support.

Benefits for the body and mind

The benefits of prenatal massage include a wide range of physiological, emotional and psychological benefits.

Positioned for comfort

Prenatal massage can be performed by having an expectant woman lie on her side, propped up with pillows; utilizing specially designed maternity cushioning systems, which allow the expectant mother to lie on her stomach, supported by the cushions; or positioning the mother-to-be in a semi-reclining position propped up by pillows.

Continued self-care

At the conclusion of the session, suggest that the mother-to-be practice self-massage and stretching sequences in between regular prenatal appointments. Encourage your client to schedule prenatal appointments every two weeks until the third trimester, when weekly appointments are recommended.

Author: Ariana Vincent, By