Massage is a wonderful tool for coping with pain in labour. It helps the mother tune into her body, be aware and connected to her baby and the birthing process and increase her trust and confidence. Through a contraction it can remind her to remain calm and centred and to relieve pain. Between contractions massage can send an instant non-verbal message to release tight muscles and rest deeply to conserve precious energy.
Massage is a great way of involving the birth-partner by offering a practical way of helping and connecting during the labour. In helping the mother to feel calm and relaxed, a more relaxing environment will be created for the baby.
Massage and acupressure techniques can be used to assist the efficiency of contractions, dilation of the cervix, the descending action of the baby, can encourage the baby into a good position, help release suppressed emotions which might be affecting labour, relieve pain, sickness and diarrhoea and expulsion of the placenta.
Massage during labour allows for an active birth as techniques can be carried out in any position and in a birthing pool. It can also be used for birth partners who need to sustain themselves too, physically and emotionally during long or intense labours.
“Having supported my partner for long periods of time through the night in standing positions the massage I received released a huge amount of tension and allowed me to carry on being supportive where otherwise my back would’ve been too painful.” (M.J Allendale)