Pregnancy and Post-Partum Massage

The benefits of massage during pregnancy include relaxation, lowering of blood pressure, waste removal, elimination of toxins, improvement of nutrition to the skin, and increased circulation, as well as an overall sense of well-being.

In addition to relieving the tension caused by a constantly changing pregnant body, massage can help the mother-to-be prepare for labor itself by having a positive touch memory of what her body can feel like, and therefore provide a positive focal point to focus on during the actual labor.

Massage Questions Answered

A massage on a pregnant woman will not include work done on the abdomen until she is at 38 weeks gestation. After 38 weeks, she can be massaged anywhere on the body.

Most massages on pregnant women will avoid the legs or include light work on the legs utilizing Indian-style massage to avoid thrombosis.

Expectant mothers with asthma will receive a massage sitting on a birth ball, as a lying down position is not conducive for this condition.

Women with diabetes or gestational diabetes can receive a massage. However, the massage will be limited to the extremities only (head, neck, shoulders, arms, hands, and feet).

Women with high blood pressure can also receive massage. Expect Indian-style massage for the entire body.

Women with multiple pregnancies will not have their abdomen massaged.

Consult Your Doctor

Some medical conditions counter indicate massage. Always consult your doctor or midwife before getting a massage, and especially if you have any medical conditions.

How to Prepare for Massage

  • Take a warm shower or bath.
  • Do not eat one hour prior to massage.
  • Avoid sugar and caffeine before massage.
  • Bring a completed release form from your midwife or doctor to your initial visit with the massage technician.


Consult your midwife or doctor as to whether you are a good candidate to receive a massage. Then have them fill out and sign the Permission/Release form and submit it prior to your massage.

Call the Natural Birth & Women's Center to schedule an appointment at the center or at your home.

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