Massage – tender love and care
During labor, it can mean a lot to feel that someone cares about you. To hold someone’s hand or feel someone’s hands on your skin.
2 min read
Reviewed by Jenny Jansson
Light, so-called tactile massage, is a soft touch, suitable when you are pregnant and also suitable during the delivery. Tactile massage increases blood circulation, stimulates concentration, and reduces the sensation of pain. During the first stage of labor, the so-called early labor when the body is preparing for childbirth, you might feel tired and unfocused. Maybe you are impatient and worried because nothing is happening. If you go to the Maternity ward during the early labor and the assessment shows you are close to the active phase when the actual labor starts, tactile massage could soothe you and also stimulate the contractions. The massage consists of light strokes and is an efficient method at this stage if you are tense and are in a lot of pain most of the time. If you have a hard time resting between the contractions, the massage can positively distract you and help the body go with the flow. You relax and can focus and get more easily into the established labor. Some women notice that their contractions are shorter and hurt fewer thanks to the massage. If the labor is dragging on, your partner can continue to massage you. It can be both comfortable and clever to practice this beforehand.
If you as a partner are participating in the childbirth, you can help by asking if she would like a massage. If it’s not a good time, ask again after a little while. Soften the lighting and let the room be completely quiet. Use vegetable oil and stroke slowly with the full palm in a repetitive pattern across the back, or on the hands and feet where there are several touch receptors. Continue for half an hour each time if possible. Massage releases the hormone oxytocin which increases the feeling of calm and relaxation whilst stimulating the labor.
Reviewed by Jenny Jansson
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