By Stacy Denney, Barefoot & Pregnant
Congratulations! You've taken the first step toward a more comfortable and relaxed pregnancy - you've booked your first prenatal spa appointment! You are one stop closer to a more blissful and nurtured pregnancy.
With the dramatic changes taking place in the pregnant woman's body, prenatal massage encourages muscle tone restoration in the abdomen, helps to reposition the pelvis and provides emotional and physical relief. Facial treatments also address the hormonal changes in pregnant women and new moms by targeting troubled spots through cleansing, exfoliation, steaming, pore extractions, mask and aromatherapy.
To get the most out of your spa visit, be sure to keep an open dialogue while you are there.
Talk to your therapist about your specific needs or issues.
The spa should take a thorough history for each prenatal client. Information gathered should include how pregnant you are, any allergies, sensitivities, physical discomforts or complications. Beyond this, the therapist or esthetician should ask questions that address your pregnancy such as your specific issues, needs and expectations.
What type of massage bed or positioning is used?
A prenatal massage is best in a side-lying or semi-reclining position. Past the first trimester, lying on the pregnant belly (prone) isn't recommended. Some women may lie on their belly at home within their own comfort level but, when there is pressure applied to the back while in this position during a massage, there is increased strain on pelvic joints and the ligaments supporting the uterus. If you are working with an experienced, trained therapist your side-lying or semi-reclining experience should be comparable to - or even better than - a prone position. Many clients continue to receive side-lying massages well after the birth of their baby!
Don't be afraid to ask questions or speak up!
When visiting a spa, some clients are uncomfortable voicing their needs. It's important to keep in mind that the visit is all about you! Don't be afraid to speak up if you are not comfortable. Everyone woman's experience is different. If you are experiencing a normal pregnancy, the best guideline is to listen to your body. If something doesn't feel comfortable, don't do it, if it does feel comfortable, enjoy!