Heather M., Great Chesterford (first baby)
Reflexology during Labour
Reflexology for an easier labour
Putting time aside for regular reflexology treatments leading up to your baby’s arrival, not only ensures you invest in the new little life growing within you, but may also affect your labour outcome!
Research has found that first time mums receiving 10 reflexology treatments prior to birth, had average labour times of 5 to 6 hours - the textbook average is 24-48 hours! It was also noted that the group treated with reflexology needed far less pain relief during labour.(2)
Over the years I have treated hundreds of expectant mums, who have felt that reflexology helped them prepare positively for labour. You can read some of their comments here.
Caitlin H., Saffron Walden
Please be aware that as a professional maternity reflexologist, I will always work in a complementary way alongside the skilled work of your midwife (your main healthcare provider during your pregnancy). I will therefore ask you for verbal confirmation that your midwife is aware that you are attending for a reflexology session, before I will be able to treat you.
Short film - one woman's experience of Reflexology during Pregnancy
Marie D,, Newport
Suffering with pregnancy discomfort?
- Nausea/morning sickness
- Heartburn/acid reflux
- Mood swings
- Fluid retention
- Back pain
- Hip/pelvic pain
Treatment sessions will enable you to ‘switch off’ and relax and may help alleviate some of these symptoms... With such dramatic changes going on at this time, both physically and emotionally, it can also be beneficial to have some regular quiet time to yourself.
Rebecca S., Saffron Walden
Unfortunately some women go on to develop one of the more debilitating conditions of pregnancy...
Hyperemesis Gravidarum is thought to affect up to as many as 1 in 50 pregnant women and in extreme cases may cause dehydration due to constant vomiting. If you are one of the unlucky sufferers, you may have nausea and sickness throughout the day and have no appetite. The calming effects of Reflexology may be particularly beneficial and specific techniques can be used to help you cope with this condition.
Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP), also known as Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)), is a potentially debilitating complaint that may last throughout pregnancy. In more severe cases as pregnancy progresses, additional support may become necessary to take pressure off the affected area. Reflexology sessions encourage relaxation and specific techniques may help in the treatment of this condition, which may make the use of crutches or a wheelchair unnecessary.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can affect some expectant mums - usually in the later stages of pregnancy. Pressure on the median nerve and tendons in the carpal tunnel of the wrist, can cause pain and tingling in the hands, which travels up the arms and into the back. Reflexology may encourage the elimination of excess fluid build-up, which seems to be a primary cause of the condition.
Reflexology after your ‘Due Date’
Lisa P., Braintree (VBAC delivery)
Only about 4% of women give birth on their 'Due Date’ and many have their babies after that. At 10 days or more post-term, a medical induction may be suggested to start and accelerate labour. But how about a more natural way to try to get things started?
A reflexology treatment in the later stages of pregnancy will promote deep relaxation and may encourage you to ‘let go’ - which sometimes has the desired effect! Specific acupressure techniques can be used that may encourage the birthing process to start, but obviously there are no guarantees - as your little one will only arrive when they are ready!
But feedback from clients who have visited my therapy room for just one post-term reflexology session, shows that they leave feeling much calmer, more confident and better prepared for the birth of their baby.
Reflexology during Labour
Emma M., Little Canfield (first baby)
I was very fortunate early in my career, to work on a voluntary basis in the Maternity Unit of a large hospital... During this time, I treated women with reflexology during labour and could see the wonderful way that it can help by:
- Relaxing and calming body and mind
- Regulating and lessening the intensity of contractions
- Providing natural pain relief
I can show you some simple hand reflexology techniques to use during labour to help you cope and remain calm, ease pain and enhance the whole birthing experience.
Reflexology is a gentle and natural way to help you recover following the birth of your baby. Huge physical and emotional changes have taken place in the space of nine months and it may take a while for your body to return to normal...
In the days following childbirth, the sudden huge drop in hormone levels may leave you feeling overwhelmed. This happens to most new mums and is commonly known as the 'baby blues'. The disturbed nights that feature heavily in the early weeks can also lead to a feeling of sheer exhaustion!
The good news is that a nurturing postnatal session will enable you to have some much needed time to yourself and will give you an opportunity to rest and recharge. Reflexology has been shown to help lift low mood, enhance your natural sleep pattern and encourage your body to heal and recover.
1 Valiani M et al - 2010 "Reviewing the effect of reflexology on pain and outcomes of the labour of primiparous women" Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research. 15(Dec) p302-310.
2 G. Motha and J. McGrath - 1992 "The effects of reflexology on labour outcome".
3 Li C-Y et al - 2011 "Randomised controlled trial of the effectiveness of using foot reflexology to improve quality of sleep amongst post partum women" Midwifery. 27. p181-186
I’m very happy to answer any questions you may have about Maternity Reflexology... Please get in touch here.