RELAX. It's Birthing time!

I can hear you all now, "Relax?! As if! My back aches, I'm tired, I have no time to get organised and to top it all off.... I'm stressed about the birth!"

Having a baby is one of the most natural things in the world to go through, yet it can also be very tiring not only for the body but for the mind as well. Underlying worry and stress can start to bring added factors into your pregnancy that you just don't need. Factors such as high blood pressure, sleeplessness, fatigue, back ache, poor memory and brain fog to mention a few are some of the negatives in pregnancy that with a few simple daily rituals and techniques you can help to alleviate.

One of the most important things I believe you can do is 'Practice the art of self love'. By this I mean 'take time for yourself', be kind to your mind and body, allow others to help you and create a stress free, relaxing world around you. And if all that fails, then rest assured in the knowledge that by simply keeping your stress levels in the mind down (emptying your cup as I say) will have a calming physical effect on the body, and vise versa.

Whats the best and most effective way to reduce stress and relax the mind and body? (.....except a large glass of wine?!)


The benefits are huge, here are just a few;

1. It Is Relaxing – When the body is tense and under stress, it produces unhealthy levels of the well-known stress hormone, cortisol, which can contribute to weight gain, sleeplessness, digestive problems, and headaches. Massage therapy has been shown to decrease cortisol levels in the body. This enables the body to enter a recovery mode. Moreover, this form of therapy also triggers lasting feelings of relaxation, improved mood, and reduced stress levels.

2. It Reduces Stress – Not only can massage therapy help with stress relief, but regular massage sessions over a prolonged period of time can boost energy levels, reduce pain, and stimulate individuals on physical as well as emotional levels.

3. It Can Help Lower Blood Pressure – Regular massage therapy sessions have been found to reduce blood pressure levels. In fact, some long-term studies have shown that a consistent massage program can reduce both systolic (upper number) and diastolic (lower number) blood pressure. Moreover, it can also reduce cortisol levels within the body. Furthermore, consistent massage sessions can also reduce trigger sources for anxiety, hostility, tension, and depression. In turn, lower blood pressure levels can also reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, and/or kidney failure, as well as many other health issues. 4. It Promotes Muscle Relaxation – The purpose of massage therapy is to target the source of the body’s pain via eliminating tense muscles, increasing flexibility, and providing relaxation to the affected muscles as well as the body as a whole. Massage also promotes circulation to the affected or injured muscles, which increases nutrients and oxygen to the damaged tissues. In turn, this increased activity to the affected sites reduces stiffness and edema (swelling) in the muscles and joints, as well as increases flexibility to help reduce pain. Moreover, this form of therapy also releases endorphins (pain-killing hormones), which boost the dopamine and serotonin levels in the body. These hormones assist the body in many ways–physically as well as emotionally. Case in point, they promote healing, pain management, and feelings of euphoria, as well as help to calm the nerves. So having someone massage you during childbirth is a great idea. So get your partners technique up to scratch!

5. It Can Help Improve Circulation – The long-term benefits of massage therapy are not to be underestimated. Improved circulation is part of a snowball effect that occurs in the body as a result of receiving regular massage therapy on a consistent basis. This is because proper circulation brings damaged, stiff, and tense muscles the rich blood supply they need to promote healing. Massage is the ultimate detox for tired muscles.

6. It Can Help Improve Posture – Many pregnant ladies experience back, neck, and muscle pain. As a result of the added weigh and restricted movement, the added strain often causes spasms, pain, and tense muscles in the hips, glutes, back, neck, and legs.

Massage therapy can help relax those tense tired muscles. As part of a consistent massage therapy program, the body’s muscles are loosened and relaxed. Moreover, the joints have greater freedom, flexibility, range of motion, and pressure points are relieved. As a result, the body is able to position itself in an organic and healthy posture. In short, massage therapy helps to correct the positions and movements developed over time as a reaction to pain.

7. It Can Help Strengthen the Body’s Immune System – Regular massage sessions provide many benefits to the human body. It is a well-known fact that individuals who experience high levels of stress are more vulnerable to illness and injury. When stress is combined with sleep disturbances and poor nutrition, the impact is directed at the body’s immune system. Its ability to naturally protect itself against infections, pathogens, and bacteria is greatly reduced. Some might wonder how massage therapy benefits the immune system. Studies have indicated that regular massage sessions not only help reduce stress, but can also boost the immune system’s cytotoxic capacity (activity level of the body’s natural “killer cells”) and enhances the body’s ability to deliver nourishment.

My ladies love the massages and from the way the babies move and swim around during the massage it seems they do too! Especially with my custom massage cushion which allows even full term Mum's to lie on their front without squishing baby.

There's not much you can use or take during pregnancy for relaxation or pain relief, but there are so many benefits of using Essential Oils it would take forever to list them and that's a whole other blog!

I recently discovered that in some cultures, particularly Asian and Indian, massage during and post pregnancy are a custom to help relax heal the body quicker after birth.

Regular massage sessions take place during and leading up to the birth and then daily (yes DAILY!!) massage after the birth, of the back and body take place in order to help the body recover from the experience and help to heal and bring the body back to its normal state more easily. This not only has physical benefits but the effects of being cared for so closely on a daily basis could in my mind, help with so many post baby problems such as post natal depression etc.


So lets now discuss HYPNOBIRTHING!

I'm sure you've all heard of this amazing way to stay focused and relaxed up to and during the birth of your baby. If not, click here.

Whether you are a first-time mum or if you have given birth before, if you have any fears about giving birth, but really want to make this experience a positive one, then you have found the right technique to prepare you and your birth partner for the birth that you desire.

Firstly, Christine promises you that hypnobirthing is not an airy-fairy cult thing for tree-huggers. Hypnobirthing is a simple and effective set of tools that helps you release any fear and negativity that often surrounds pregnancy. It will prepare the your mindset for a calm and confident birth. By simply understanding what happens to your body during labour, learning how to remain relaxed and following the breathing and visualisation techniques, you too can experience a wonderful birth.​

Expert in the field is Christine Huntingford of Magical Baby Moments, Essex here are some of here testimonials

"I thought hypnobirthing woud be really 'hippy-like' but actually everything we learnt makes sense and is not hippy at all. I feel like this is something that I will definitely use in my coming birth. Overall it was a very positive experience."

" After completing the Hypnobirthing Course,

I felt more positive and optimistic that we can have a good experience

instead of fearing the birth"

There are so many ways to aid you in the build up and during the birth of your baby and the main key to all of them is to 'relax'!

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