Abdominal Massage during Pregnancy | What to Expect?

Published: Jun 15, 2024
Edited by: Marce Ferreira

Pregnant woman receiving Abdominal Massage

© Image by Depositphotos

In this post, we’ll discuss the applications, aims, and health benefits of Abdominal Massage for pregnant women.

Prenatal Massage therapy — notably for the legs, knees, feet and ankles, hips, pelvic region, and the lower back — can help to alleviate fatigue in pregnant women, stretch and relax muscles and joints and lessen discomforts and pains, increase flexibility and energy levels, and mitigate certain side-effects of pregnancy, like headaches, dizziness, sleeping issues, hemorrhoids, constipation, anxiety and hypersensitivity, and such.

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Nevertheless, it’s common to only lightly massage women who are pregnant, and only after three months of pregnancy until/including their eight month, and not to give massage sessions in the last month before childbirth as to avoid preterm birth.

With Abdominal Massage and/or Abdominal Reflexology Massage, things are even more strict. That is, the abdominal region can be given acupressure, gently touched, caressed, stroked, and/or massaged (the latter usually with oils, creams, or warm herbal compresses), but in order to avoid complications for the pregnant woman or fetus it’s out of the question to give firm or deep Abdominal Massage or acupressure.

In a general sense, appropriate and gentle Abdominal Massage during pregnancy can increase blood flow to the placenta and uterus which supplies nutrients to the baby, help in better digestion and detoxification through a better blood circulation, and reduce stress, promote relaxation, and increase emotional bonding with the unborn infant. As for the latter, especially older fetuses respond strongly to touch when the mother’s abdomen is touched and gentle Abdominal Massage can be used as a relaxing and calming moment for the baby and one of the ways to already bond with the mother.

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In addition, there are also specialized Abdominal Massage modalities that may be applied in the prenatal period which have a specific aim, and are usually carried out in the last phase of the pregnancy period. Think of Abdominal Massage done on the uterus (womb), for instance, to strengthen and tone the uterus, to turn or tilt it or to manipulate the position of the baby, to ease pains and discomforts by relaxing the abdominal area, psoas muscles, ligaments, or the pelvic floor, or to speed-up delivery, labor, and/or childbirth. Mind also that these types of abdominal massages are usually defined as being part of Perinatal Massage treatments.

There are also specialized abdominal massages that are performed to induce an abortion and end the pregnancy, but that’s of course a whole other domain. You can read more about that in our post about Abdominal Massage and Deliberate Abortions.

At any rate, some examples of abdominal massages that — depending on the goal — may be applied in the pregnancy period are Thai Kud Thong Massage, Yok Thong, Thai Womblifting, Sengkak Uterus Massage, Prenatal Baby Massage, and Maya Abdominal Massage.

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