Labor Preparation Massage

This massage is specific to women at 38 to 40 weeks gestation or those who have gone beyond their due date. Labor preparation is a gentle but effective way to nudge the body to get ready for labor. It will not force the body to go into labor, but instead work with where the body is naturally to help get the body and baby ready and or help facilitate the process. Studies have shown that stimulating specific acupressure points help raise oxytocin levels (hormones needed for labor) to stimulate the body to shift into labor (however, the body and baby must be ready for labor for the massage to stimulate labor). If the body or baby is not ready, the massage will help the cervix to ripen, efface and dilate, but labor will not begin until mom and baby are truly ready.

The goals of this massage include:

· Relaxing the mother-to-be
· Releasing stored emotional and energetic blocks to help with readiness for labor
· Preparing the birthing muscles
· Assisting the body in activating contractions and labor
· Helping with cervical dilation through the use of acupressure points
· Stimulating specific acupressure points thought to help move the baby down the birth canal
· Helping with oxytocin production to facilitate labor
· Providing a nurturing and safe space for the mother to be and process any fears or anxiety about labor

Research

Current research has shown us that professional massage support during labor provides you with the following benefits:

· 50% reduction in the cesarean rate
· 25% shorter labor
· 60% reduction in epidural requests
· 40% reduction in oxytocin use
· 30% reduction in analgesia use
· 40% reduction in forceps delivery

In a study from Journal of Psychosomatic Obstetrics and Gynecology, 28 women were recruited from prenatal classes and randomly assigned to receive massage in addition to coaching in breathing from their partners during labor, or to receive coaching in breathing alone (a technique learned during prenatal classes). The massaged mothers reported a decrease in depressed mood, anxiety, and pain, and showed less agitated activity and anxiety and more positive affect following the first massage during labor. In addition, the massaged mothers had significantly shorter labors, a shorter hospital stay, and less postpartum depression.



Our Massage Therapy Providers

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Colleen Eimerman

Therapeutic Massage

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Katie Mogg

Therapeutic Massage

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