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Post Natal Massage

How A Post Pregnancy Massage Can Really Help A New Mum

  1. Relaxation And Reduced Stress

One of the most immediate benefits of a post natal massage for new Mums is that a massage will relax them and reduce stress. 

Particularly first time Mums, who may not be used to being sleep deprived, a massage can be an awesome way for them to take a little “me time”.

The massage relaxes the muscles by helping to increase circulation throughout the body. This increased circulation lowers stress hormones, which is crucial following nine months of pregnancy.

A post pregnancy massage also starts the ‘relaxation response’ which slows your breathing, decreases heart rate, and lowers blood pressure.

A post natal massage can also reduce nerve compression, which allows the nerves to obtain the correct nutrients that will enable them to work more efficiently. mobilisation and reducing pain.

A massage will also release serotonin, a chemical that positively affects emotions and thoughts, and this is another factor that contributes to reduced stress. Becoming a new Mum can be highly stressful, and a massage may just help you get through those first few, sleep deprived months. 

There is also some limited research to suggest that regular relaxation massages may help with post natal depression also.

2. Massage Can Help With Pain Relief, Scarring And Stretch Marks

Just as pregnancy massage has been shown to help reduce pain before having a baby and during labour, a massage afterwards can also help with residual pain.

One common one is shoulder and back pain from carrying your child. 

A postnatal massage can help you deal with this pain and is an alternative to taking pain medication.

The massage will help to improve your posture, stability, and coordination. A deep tissue massage is also an effective treatment for lower back pain and also sciatica.

Massage is also good for any muscle knots, with trigger point therapy being a more intense form of massage that can help unlock chronic muscle spasms.

Massages can also increase the range of shoulder motion, which can be stiff when carrying an infant around all day.

During post pregnancy recovery, the rhomboid and trapezius muscles, (the muscles that lie under your shoulder blades and down from the neck) can become tight.

Firmer styles of massage can help release these.

Tightness in these areas can also lead to headaches as well. So, if you are experiencing these after the birth, a massage may help.

There is also some preliminary research that suggests massage may help with scarring and stretch marks as well.

3. Massage Can Reduce Swelling

After giving birth, the body can hold fluid, mostly in the ankles and wrists. This is known as lymph fluid, and is one of the main ways your body gets rid of waste and toxins. This can lead to edema or swelling.

A lymphatic massage is the best type of massage to reduce this swelling post pregnancy. There are a few other things you can do to reduce post pregnancy swelling as well as massage. Some of the best tips are here

Another good thing to do is to keep the swollen areas elevated and try to stay off your feet. It’s also beneficial to drink lots of water.  

4. Massage Can Improve Your Sleep

Being sleep deprived is normal after giving birth. It can affect your concentration, your mood, increase stress and anxiety, and can make the transition to becoming a Mum really difficult.

Massages help to ease the sleep deprivation you can face after the birth.

Massage can also help activate delta brain waves, which promote deep sleep and help you to feel better rested.

Postnatal massage can really help re balance your sleep rhythms, once your baby has settled into a routine as well. 

5. Better Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding can sometimes be difficult for some new Mums.

Postnatal massages can help stimulate the tissue around the breast to improve the milk flow.

Studies have shown that massages can increase the production of prolactin levels. Prolactin is a lactation hormone which helps to increase the amount of breast milk. 

As well as increasing the milk, a massage will also help your baby latch to the nipple, which makes it easier for them to feed and also reduces discomfort from engorged breasts and mastitis. 

Surprisingly, its not only breast massage that is helpful for breast feeding. Another study showed that even having a back massage helped increase milk production.

6. Massage Helps With Post Natal Depression

Postpartum depression affects one in every seven new mothers, and the symptoms include self-doubt, unhappiness, depression and fatigue. 

For most Mums, these issues dissipate after a few weeks and are commonly known as Baby Blues.


However, if they persist, they can lead to further problems, and this is a sign of clinic depression. 

During pregnancy, estrogen and progesterone levels are high, and while they decrease after delivery, it can still cause hormone imbalances that can affect your mood. 

With other rising hormone levels such as prolactin and oxytocin, your body will struggle to cope as it is used to, which releases cortisol, a stress hormone. 

A postnatal massage has been shown to help to balance your mood by reducing hormone levels that are affecting your mental well being. 

Dopamine and serotonin are other biochemicals that are related to depression, and a massage can help balance these chemical levels. A massage will also save you relying on prescription medication. 

Infant massage has also been shown to help reduce post natal depression, and help new mothers who may be struggling with bonding with their new baby.      

Ali Saoirse from Ripple Massage


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