Pregnancy is an emotional journey full of physical changes for women. Hormonal changes in the body cause pain and swelling. Therefore, many pregnant women are interested in massage therapy to relieve pain and stress.
Massage guns have become popular tools due to their ease of use. However, can pregnant women use massage guns? In fact, a massage gun is only safe on certain parts of the body during pregnancy.
Are Massage Guns Safe During Pregnancy?
Before we delve into the effects of a massage gun on pregnant women, we need to understand the nature of percussion massage. This therapy is not a manual practice and you will need the help of tools during the massage process. And massage guns are the most popular devices.
Some of the popular brands that people look for when it comes to massage guns are Theragun, Hypervolt or ReAthlete. Many people don't even know the term "massage gun" but only know Theragun or Hypervolt.
It's safe to use a massage gun while pregnant, but only under certain circumstances. When using it, you must be carefully advised by your doctor.
This type of percussion massager improves blood circulation and stimulates muscles. In addition, it also acts on pressure points to effectively relieve body pain, reduce anxiety and treat muscle spasms.
If you can safely receive regular treatments, your mental and physical health will improve dramatically. The best part is that the percussion massage also strengthens the muscles. So it can contract and expand at any time to relieve pain.
Nevertheless, the improper use of massage guns can have serious consequences. A scientific study shows that people with a high-risk pregnancy should get their doctor's permission before using it.
The first trimester of pregnancy is the time when you should be most careful. The reason is that the risk of miscarriage is very high.
The increased blood flow during massage also harms the fetus.
In summary, percussion massagers are safe devices under the supervision of a doctor or healthcare professional. If you are not sure about your health, stop.
On the contrary, you can enjoy stress and pain relieving therapy in a healthy pregnancy.
How Do I Use a Massage Gun Safely for Pregnancy?
The vibration of massage guns can have some adverse effects on the mother's body and the unborn child if you don't use them properly. Note some of the following points.
When is the right time to use massage guns?
In the first trimester, the mother's body is extremely fragile and miscarriages occur easily. So you need to limit the impact at this point.
After the first trimester, pregnant women occasionally come to the check-up. Your doctor or healthcare professional will advise you on using the massage gun at this time.
If you have symptoms of a high-risk pregnancy, chances are you should not use this device. In addition, you should also consider stopping therapy if you experience symptoms such as tiredness and restlessness. Not everyone is suitable for this method.
More serious symptoms that require immediate discontinuation are nausea or preterm labor. Some manifestations include vaginal bleeding, cramps, and high blood pressure.
Preterm labor causes premature birth, which negatively affects the baby's health.
Many doctors also prohibit pregnant women from using massagers if they have had a miscarriage in the past.
Where should you use the percussion massager during pregnancy?
Blood flow in the body tends to increase during pregnancy, especially in the lower parts of the body. Therefore, you should limit the impact on this area.
The deep massage technique of various tools can dissolve blood clots. You are endangering your health.
The good news is that these massagers do not negatively affect the upper parts of the body like the back, shoulders and neck. However, areas that you shouldn't put pressure on are the thighs, lower back, abdomen, and shins.
Overstimulation in these areas leads to bruising and the dissolution of blood clots. Better yet, you should only use percussion massagers on the upper body to ensure complete safety. Don't forget to talk to your doctor for the most satisfactory advice.
Who can use percussion massagers?
It's up to your personal preferences. You can ask a professional physiotherapist to do a body massage. Alternatively, you can also seek professional advice at home.
Your partner is also a potential audience. If they have sufficient knowledge and skills, you can ask them to do the therapy for you.
Additional safety tips
In addition to the above advice, you should also keep the following safety tips in mind:
- Avoid using the massage gun on areas with swelling or inflammation.
- Start by gently gliding the device over the sore spots for 10 to 15 seconds.
- Do the treatment 3-5 times on one area and then switch to another.
- Discontinue use if you experience pain or cramps.
- Please do not leave the massager in one place for too long, it may cause severe irritation and bruising.
- Use it at the lowest possible speed.
- Avoid using the massager on bones, joints and nerves.
Also, you should not use percussion massagers unless you are sure of their safety. It requires a lot of skill and care.
During pregnancy, it's perfectly normal to be a little paranoid and exaggerate about your health. You might consider using gentle hand massage sessions.
These slow movements will bring absolute relaxation to the body without much risk.
Why is massage good for pregnant women?
The therapist massages a pregnant woman with his hand
There is no scientific evidence on the specific benefits of using massage guns for pregnant women. However, some studies show that massage has a positive effect on the body.
During pregnancy, the body puts a lot of stress on the lower back, causing leg and back pain.
Many people also experience other symptoms of fatigue, such as edema (swelling), cramps, and muscle spasms, which affect sleep quality. Lack of sleep increases stress hormones and disrupts emotions.
Studies on massage therapy have shown that it relieves pain and reduces prenatal depression. It's also completely safe with an affordable price tag.
Some of the benefits of massage therapy are:
- Reduce fluid retention or edema during pregnancy.
- Relieve back and leg pain.
- reduce stress.
- Improve sleep by treating sleep disorders.
- Decreased levels of the stress hormone norepinephrine.
A 2020 scientific review has shed more light on massage's role in improving psychological well-being and reducing stress in pregnant women. You can:
Increases the level of happy hormones such as dopamine and serotonin.
Reducing anxiety-causing cortisol levels.
In addition to the psychoactive effect, this therapy also plays an important role in strengthening the immune system. It protects pregnant women from viruses and bacteria.
Which areas should not be massaged during pregnancy?
Although scientific studies have shown the benefits of massage therapy during pregnancy, you still need to be careful.
There are parts of the body that should never be massaged. You should avoid some of the following areas when you are pregnant.
The abdomen and surrounding areas are the parts that need the most attention during pregnancy. Better yet, don't let professional masseuses touch that part.
If the hand is not placed correctly, baby and mother can be injured.
Caution should also be exercised when applying lotions and anti-stretch marks. Try not to put too much strain on this area.
2. Leg veins
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) can occur in pregnant women. The main reason is that blood and fluid increase during this period.
Applying deep pressure to the tissues of the leg can break up the blood clot. In the long term, they pose a serious health hazard.
Foot massage is generally a sensitive issue for pregnant women. One of the other places to look out for is the ankle.
Although there are no scientific studies on the adverse effects of stress on the ankle area, this suggests that massaging the Achilles tendon may promote labor.
Some scientists believe this is because the knuckles have pressure points that correlate with the reproductive organs. Therefore, you need to be careful in the first trimester.
4. Pressure points
Pressure points in the wrists, between the fingers, or around the knuckles are areas where you shouldn't use too much force. Otherwise, they run the risk of causing a seizure.
High risk health conditions
If you experience the following symptoms, you need to speak to your doctor or health care professional to get the best advice. It is helpful that pregnant women with these symptoms should not use massage therapy.
This condition usually develops around 20 weeks gestation or later. The result is a sharp rise in blood pressure throughout the body.
2. Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
If you have a history of DVT, the methods or uses of body massage in general, or a theragun in particular, are very dangerous.
Pregnancy increases blood volume and decreases blood flow in the legs. Blood also clots more easily thanks to certain hormones that prevent birth bleeding.
Improper use of massage therapies dissolves blood clots. As a result, it leads to an embolism and can be life-threatening.
3. High-risk pregnancy
If your doctor has warned about risks during childbirth, such as B. preeclampsia, bleeding or contractions before childbirth, you must be careful. Avoid massages unless instructed to do so.
4. Gestational Diabetes
To prevent gestational diabetes, you should carefully monitor your blood sugar. If the level is too high, you need your doctor's permission to use massage therapy.
5. Placenta previa, abortion or accretion
Diseases or conditions related to the placenta can cause internal bleeding. They are dangerous for the mother's life.
In short, you can use a theragun, a hypervolt, or in general a massage gun during pregnancy. However, you should only use it on upper body areas such as shoulders, neck and back.
The impact on the underlying areas will cause pain and even seriously affect the health of both mother and baby.
The most important thing is to consult a doctor or health care professional before use. They give the best advice for your situation.