The rush of excitement of having a baby can soon be replaced with exhaustion, being overwhelmed and a need to go into survival mode as you enter into the postpartum phase of childbirth. And as a new mom, focusing on your own health and wellness typically is pushed aside as all of your energy and attention is focused on raising a happy and healthy baby.
But as most experienced moms will tell you -- and you later realize as your babies turn to toddlers and school-aged children -- if moms don’t take care of their health physically and mentally, it makes it a lot more difficult to care for the mental and physical well-being of your kids.
To jump-start motherhood feeling happy and healthy, it’s essential to continue your massage therapy sessions after the birth of your child and beyond.
“It’s a pretty typical thing for moms to put themselves last,” explains Bonnie Vaniea, massage therapist at Elements Wilsonville. “The big climax is having the baby, so I don’t think people think about the aftermath. They don’t think about their own care after birth and the importance of getting your mind and body back to feeling normal.
"Postpartum massage can really be helpful for getting moms relaxed and feeling better, especially when they aren’t sleeping well.”
Follow Up Physical Pain of Childbirth with Gentle, Relaxing Touch
Most women don’t realize how traumatic giving birth can be to their bodies. Postpartum massage sessions can help heal the body by focusing on using soft, relaxing touch to revive and recuperate your tired muscles.
In a postpartum massage, Vaniea focuses on massaging the abdominal area to tighten muscles and work on helping regulate digestion. She also works on the leg muscles and feet since they’ve been carrying so much weight during the pregnancy, as well as the lower back area.
Overall, the main purpose of a postpartum massage is to help moms get back to feeling like themselves a lot faster and to help release the stresses associated with having a newborn.
“After going through the brutal pain that can be associated with giving birth, it’s nice to get everything relaxed in an easy and gentle way,” explains Vaniea. “I also like to teach my clients about massage techniques they can use on their babies. Infant massage is really good for increasing communication and bonding between moms and their infants.”
Relaxation and Stress Reduction Important to Overall Health
Having a newborn in the house can be a stressful time for parents and their children withconstant feeding schedules, multiple diaper changes, and frequent bouts of crying and screaming. Regular postpartum massages can help release the common tension and stress that can build up as you care for the health and well-being of your newborn.
A one-hour massage can work wonders to give you some quiet mom-only time that is dedicated to relaxing your tense muscles, revitalizing your spirit, and recuperating your mental and physical health.
“Most moms feel super relaxed after a massage -- a little less cranky and they’re a lot happier when they take the time to continue with post-natal massage,” shares Vaniea. “It’s awesome to help moms get their body and mind feeling normal again after the birth of their child.”
Align Your Postpartum Massage with Your Post-Pregnancy Doctor’s Appointments
Most post-pregnancy doctor plans call for appointments a couple of weeks or so after the delivery of the baby. Aligning your postpartum massage sessions to follow your doctor’s appointments can make it easier for you to stick with a post-natal massage wellness plan.
Vaniea says that there isn’t a strict timeframe of when you can come in for your first massage after giving birth. In fact, Vaniea encourages all of her prenatal clients to come in for a massage as soon as they feel up to it and as soon as their doctors give them the OK. If you’ve had a Cesarean section, you’ll probably need to wait a little longer for everything to heal because lying on a massage table before the incision area is healed completely may not be too comfortable, advises Vaniea.
Overall, postpartum massage can be beneficial for helping your body bounce back quicker from the pain and strain of giving birth, as well as giving your mind a well-deserved break after enduring pregnancy for nine months and experiencing the sleep deprivation that a newborn brings with him or her.
New moms deserve to take care of the health and well-being of their minds and bodies. Postpartum massage will not only make you a healthier and happier mom, but it will carry over into helping you raise a happy and healthy baby.