Pre conception, pregnancy and post natal care...How can Reflexology help along the way?
July 28th, 2012 by Noemie Perkins MFHT
Have you ever considered calling on a specialised Reflexologist for conception, pregnancy, labour or post natal care but were never too sure of how exactly it might help you, how many treatments you would have to book and whether it would have beneficial effects... if any at all? This article is here to bring a bit more light on the matter.
Reflexology for pre conception:
Why? Preconception reflexology treatments will help in many ways those couples who are trying to conceive.
Reflexology will help prepare a healthy, balanced environment for pregnancy
Reflexology will encourage ovulation
Reflexology will help reduce yours and your partner's stress levels
Reflexology will contribute to the restoration of hormonal balance
Reflexology can encourage healthy sperm production and erectile functions.
When? It is usually advised to receive at least two treatments a month pre ovulation and after the onset of the menstruation period (no reflexology should be offered if there is a chance conception might have already occurred).
Your therapist/reflexologist will not be able to predict the length of the treatment plan. Conception may occur within 6 weeks, 6 months or even up to 18 months after the start of the treatment. Conception and a successful pregnancy involve many different factors and although reflexology has proven to be of great help to couples trying to conceive, in some cases, conception may not occur and you can ask your therapist to stop or interrupt the treatment plan whenever you see convenient.
Reflexology for pregnancy:
How early? Once conception has occurred, Reflexology isn't usually recommended until the 14th week of your pregnancy (at the earliest). Indeed it is better to allow your body to settle as well as the baby. The first trimester is a fragile period of changes and it would be wise not to disrupt this process.
How can it help? In the 2d and 3rd trimesters of pregnancy however, reflexology treatments can help with most ailments and discomforts brought about by your pregnancy (sciatica, constipation, heartburns, back pain, anxiety etc). Regular reflexology treatments during pregnancy can bring you peace, confidence and prepare your body for labour and birth.
How often? Treatments are advised on an as and when basis, depending on your budget and how you are feeling. Weekly, monthly, bi monthly, or even more occasional, there is no rule at this point.
Reflexology for the natural onset of labour:
What can it do? Research has been published that shows that women who have received regular reflexology treatments throughout their pregnancy will tend to:
- have more natural, unassisted births
- comparatively shorter labours
- faster recovery lesser risk of infections after surgery
From 37 weeks on, specialised reflexology treatments are intensified little by little in order to encourage the production of hormones and the activation of the processes of labour and thus bring on the natural onset of labour.
How often? Please be aware that one isolated reflexology treatment might not in itself help trigger labour. It is advised to plan to receive a series of specialised pre labour treatments if your intention is to induce natural labour. After week 39, two treatments a week might be needed. After 40 weeks, you may be advised to a treatment every 2 or 3 days, even daily treatments if you so wish.
Reflexology for post natal care:
After the birth, Reflexology can be an essential part of the new mom's after care and has many benefits:
Reflexology treatments will help restore Mom's fragile hormonal balance
Reflexology will help prevent post natal depression and anxiety
Reflexology will help to improve sleep patterns
Reflexology will encourage the recovery of energies after labour
Reflexology will encourage quicker healing and will lessen the risk of infection after surgical intervention or stitches for example
Reflexology can also be a valuable asset for breastfeeding, encouraging, for example, good lactation.
The miracles and wonders that are conception, pregnancy and birth are fascinating and supporting expectant mums and dads and their families along this very unique journey is a privilege for the specially trained reflexologists. Reflexology can do a lot to help along the way. However, not knowing what to expect, it can be difficult to choose a therapist to help and support you, as well as your partner and your baby (babies).