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The Benefits of Massage during Pregnancy

by Melissa Bell
4 minutes read

Congratulations, your baby is growing! 

That’s exactly what should be happening. Pregnancy is a special time; however, as your body changes, it can be tough on your back, especially in the latter stages. 

You’ve got lots of company — most pregnant women experience back pain, but you should know that there are therapies that can minimise your back pain. 

pregnant massage

Massage therapies have been used for over many centuries now as a form of healing, reducing stress, contributing to improvements in health and relieving muscle tension. Many mothers-to-be opt for prenatal massages to relax nervous tension and reduce stress on weight-bearing joints.

Here’s how pregnancy massage can be a natural way of soothing away aches and pains.

1. Helps Fight Anaemia During Pregnancy

During pregnancy, your body needs to make more blood cells to supply enough for you and your baby. Due to this increased demand, iron deficiency becomes very common. Although it is normal to experience mild anaemia (a condition in which there is insufficient haemoglobin in the blood), severe anaemia may put you and your baby at risk of premature delivery and low birth weight. 

What can help in such a case?

An iron-rich diet with a full body massage helps boost blood and lymph circulation, plus helps relieve tiredness. By stimulating circulation, massage also raises the red blood count and produces more haemoglobin.

2. Steers Away from Pregnancy Heartburn

During the second half of pregnancy, your digestive system becomes sluggish, giving the nutrients from the food you eat more time to enter your bloodstream and reach your baby. Slower digestion can cause constipation and heartburn. And stress can make heartburn even worse. 

Prenatal massage helps reduce anxiety and stress and thus helps ease constipation and other digestive troubles.


3. Calms Down Migraines and Headaches 

Migraines and headaches are like the lottery when it comes to pregnancy. On average, ten percent of women suffer from migraine in pregnancy. Headaches and migraines during pregnancy are a result of hormonal changes taking place in the body. They can also be caused by stress or tension on the head, neck and shoulder area as a result of poor posture. That is why, to reduce the pressure on your spine and back, it is important to maintain a good posture. 

But how to maintain a good posture during pregnancy?

Osteopathic manipulation of soft tissues can help relieve tension and improve blood circulation. It also helps restore tissue alignment and improve the rhythm and quality of sleep. 

Specialists of osteopathy in London at Bodytonic Clinic can be of great assistance to you if you are looking for osteopathic treatment during pregnancy.

4. Diminishes the Chances of SPD

During pregnancy, ligaments and joints become softened by the production of the hormone, relaxin. This can cause swelling and pain and make the symphysis pubis joint less stable, causing SPD. Symphysis pubis dysfunction can be very debilitating.

Deep tissue massage helps in pregnancy pain and discomfort like SPD. It assists in helping release oxytocin and endorphins, which further helps relieve the pain.

5. Keeps Stretch Marks at Bay

When your bump grows, the skin stretches too, causing tightness and stretch marks. Massaging the skin of your hips and belly with a good nourishing oil helps moisturise and soothe the skin. A gentle massage increases the blood flow and breaks up the scar tissue that contribute to stretch marks.

TIP: Do not use any essential oils unless recommended by the doctor as some might not be safe during pregnancy.

6. Maintains a Healthy Blood Flow

Swelling in the ankles and hands during pregnancy is the body’s normal response to changes in blood circulation and increased pressure on the major blood vessels. Stimulating the soft tissues helps boost circulation – encouraging lymph to move around the body, reducing the collection of fluids in the joints and thus, reducing swelling.

Massage is a wonderful way to ease away pains and aches. However, it is very important that any massage therapy is carried out by a therapist who is qualified in prenatal massages. There are cases when you must not have a pregnancy massage if, for example, you are suffering from any of the following

  • Contagious illness
  • Unusual pain
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Heavy vaginal discharge
  • Pre-eclampsia
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure


Therapeutic massage has been used for decades to reduce stress, improve overall health, and relieve muscle tension. Likewise, massage during pregnancy improves overall health for pregnant women. Along with appropriate guidance, pregnancy massages can be incorporated into routine prenatal care as a health supplement and instrumental ingredient that can improve pregnancy outcome and maternal health.

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