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Video:Pregnancy Massage

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Pregnancy massage may reduce stress, decrease swelling in arms and legs, and relieve aches and pains in muscles and joints. Learn what to expect and how you can benefit.See Transcript

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Transcript:Pregnancy Massage

Hi, I'm Amanda Donis, a licensed massage therapist, certified in prenatal massage therapy. My practice is Amanda Donis therapeutic massage. And I'm here today at the N-4 med spa in Williamsburg Brooklyn to show the benefits of pregnancy massage.

Positioning the Body

The main difference between pregnancy massage and regular therapuedic massage is that we focus specifically on the associated aches and pains of the pregnant body. 

So we're going to be using a supported sideline position with the body cushion system.  Here we give some extra support to the abdominal area to avoid any pressure on the abdominal vessels. As well we'd like to maintain the proper alignment of the hips and the knees during the course of the treatment.

Check for Swelling

Excess swelling around the ankles should always be checked by your massage therapist to ensure there is no pitting edema at the ankles. We do a quick check for indentation of the skin then feeling for local areas of redness, heat, or swelling on the legs. It's important to check for presence  of blood clots.

We also need to consider several of the major accupressure points to be concerned with during pregnancy massage. These are known to possibly stimulate uterine contractions and labor.   

During the Massage

In the sideline position, a very effective release technique can be experienced by applying gentle pressure at the sacral area of the spine.

We work gently on the neck and head area as well as the common areas where stress gets stored in the shoulders. We can use gentle pressure in the leg area as well to help restore energy to tired legs.

Some of the key points for reducing  low back pain can also be worked here in the hip area. As well we work on the scalp and head area to help reduce tension in the head. The main idea with the prenatal massage, is to keep the safety of the pregnant woman in focus as well as her optimal comfort level.

For more information about prenatal massage visit About.com.

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