Spa Treatments During Pregnancy
Today, it is unusual to find a spa that doesn’t have services geared toward the needs of the expectant mom. Looking at the ever-growing number of women becoming pregnant, and the expanding age range in which woman are having children, it’s understandable.
With more than 4 million U.S. births every year, there are plenty of mommy clients desiring a prenatal or postnatal massage by someone who understands their particular bodywork needs.
Massage therapists have long catered to the pregnant client, pregnancy spa treatments helping her relax, renew, and even physically prepare for the strenuous birth date. As a therapist, I always enjoy taking care of my mommies to be. Many of them I have taken through several pregnancies. When I finally meet the baby, somehow they always seem to know me and we have a special bond. Some of them are now pre-teens, and definitely hold a special place in my heart.
Now, spas are picking up the pregnancy pace as this unique client is walking through their doors seeking respite more than ever before. Here are some pointers for Pregnancy and the spa and a look at what is new.
Pregnancy and Spa Treatments – What’s Safe?
Pregnancy is a great time to be pampered. You surely deserve it even more than you do usually. You need it more than you do usually. And people are more likely to buy you spa-related treats than they do usually.
But you have to be careful. Some products, treatments and techniques are not recommended for you and your baby, and you need to be confident about what you’re having.
These days, most spas are clued in and offer treatments specifically for pregnant women, and these get more imaginative all the time.
Choose a spa and therapist you trust if you can, preferably one that comes with a recommendation. Even then, however, it’s worth bearing a few things in mind so you know what to watch out for.
Pregnancy Spa Do’s & Don’ts
Here are a few Dos and Don’ts to make sure you get the best treatment you can and get the most out of it
DO avoid body treatments in the first three months of your pregnancy.
DO make sure you continue having treatments during your pregnancy. It can assist you in feeling more comfortable.
DO choose the spas and spa products carefully. Choose products that are organic, natural products and that are safe for pregnant women.
DO consider foot treatments: pedicures, reflexology and foot baths. When you’re pregnant it may be difficult to get down there yourself. Your feet and legs often feel tired and heavy, too, and maybe swollen. A foot massage will get your circulation going and help reduce the swelling, aches, and pains.
DO try a pregnancy massage, even if you’re feeling self-conscious, you will feel so much better and be surprised at just how easy it is.
You may find that you’re more sensitive to smells than usual. After the first trimester, aromatherapy is fine as long as it is pleasant for you; however, essential oils may be absorbed through the skin. Until more is known, use only oils that have been tested for safety in later stages of pregnancy.
See Aromatherapy Chart. This chart indicates essential oils that should not be used during the different stages of pregnancy.
Note: You should always check with your doctor prior to any massage service or aromatherapy session.
Hair color: There is a lot of debate on this issue, but the most recent studies show that there is nothing to worry about. Although, there haven’t been any conclusive studies done, most healthcare providers will suggest waiting to color or perm hair until after the first trimester, minimizing any possible effect on the developing fetus. In addition, changing your hair color or texture can be a smelly business, and sensitivity to fumes is usually at its peak during the first trimester.
DON’T have any non-pregnancy-approved body treatments if you are, or think you might be, pregnant. Some essential oils, chemicals, ingredients, techniques, and treatments could be harmful to you or your baby, so make sure you get good advice.
DON’T choose spa products that contain parabens or other chemical additives.
DON’T have heat treatment. Saunas and steam rooms can be dangerous for you when you’re pregnant as they raise your internal body temperature. Science has known for years that fever in early pregnancy is bad for the embryo, increasing the chances of miscarriage and birth defects. The baby, whose body temperature is a degree higher than yours, doesn’t have a way to get rid of heat except through your ability to cool off. All treatments that raise your body temperature should be off-limits during pregnancy. This includes the sauna, steam room, and hot tub, hot stone massages and body wraps.
DON’T have a heated wrap or wrap that will cause you to get hot. Any type of body wrap that heats your body up and includes covering your stomach probably isn’t safe during pregnancy. A body wrap may also result in dehydration, which can increase your risk of preterm labor. And as with hot tubs, overheating from a body wrap or a sauna can cause any number of pregnancy complications or even miscarriage.
DON’T go in the Jacuzzi or any hot pools. A recent study found that women who used hot tubs or Jacuzzis in early pregnancy were twice as likely to have a miscarriage as women who did not. Studies have also shown an increase in neural tube defects. Expectant mothers should not let their body temperature rise above 102.2 degrees for more than 10 minutes. This can interfere with a baby’s cell division and cause brain damage or other birth defects. They should also avoid aerobic exercise in hot weather or overheated swimming pools.
DON’T (particularly in the first three months) have any massage or facial or use any products featuring any of the essential oils specified in the aromatherapy chart.
DON’T consume the following foods:
Sushi and oysters. Uncooked seafood can carry hepatitis A or parasites like tapeworm Hot dogs, deli and lunch meats. Deli meats can carry listeria, which can cause miscarriage, premature delivery or stillbirth.
Brie and other unpasteurized soft cheeses. These also carry the risk of listeriosis.
Large fish like shark, shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish. These can contain levels of mercury high enough to harm an unborn child, but a pregnant woman can safely eat up to 12 ounces a week of a variety of fish and shellfish lower in mercury such as crawfish, shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon and catfish.
Raw sprouts. Raw vegetable sprouts can carry Salmonella and E. coli.
Raw or undercooked meat, poultry or eggs. These can carry many food-borne illnesses, including listeriosis, E. coli and Campylobacter infections, salmonellosis and toxoplasmosis.
Spa Services that are Good For Pregnancy
Body treatments (Unheated)
Body treatments designed to soothe and moisturize the skin are an excellent way to relax. They may help reduce the dreaded stretch marks.
Caution: Products should be organic and free of essential oils as specified in the Aromatherapy essential oils chart. The temperature should not be too warm.
Pregnancy hormones can wreak havoc on your skin, and deep-cleansing or moisturizing facials designed to address common issues like acne, dehydration and even hyperpigmentation, otherwise known as the pregnancy mask, will be beneficial.
Caution: It’s wise to pass on harsh chemical peels that use strong glycolic, or products with retinoic acid, which has been associated with birth defects, during pregnancy. These include Accutane and retinol. Even essential oils can be a problem for hypersensitive pregnant skin and noses. Oils should not be applied directly to the skin.
Prenatal massage is specially tailored to your changing body and can help alleviate specific discomforts like low back pain and edema, or swelling. I prefer to do a maternity massage on a hydraulic table with a maternity body cushion. Although, some therapists may do a sideline massage. This means that you are lying on your side and bolsters or pregnancy pillows are used to support you. However it is done, the important thing is that it is comfortable for you.
Caution: Reflexology, a therapy which massages the hands and feet, may trigger certain pressure points on the foot that may cause contractions or preterm labor. So, it’s wise to visit an experienced technician who knows exactly what to avoid.
Manicures and pedicures
A good manicure and pedicure is always a nice treat, especially when you can no longer reach your own toes! The foot and leg massage that often comes with the latter can also help relieve the pain and pressure of all those extra pounds you’re carrying around.
Caution: Make sure the salon is well-ventilated in order to evade the strong fumes from nail polish, polish remover, acetone removers, and acrylic products. Also, consider bringing your own tools along in order to avoid even the slightest chance of fungal or bacterial infection. Your nail technician should know you are pregnant and avoid reflex points that could induce labor.
Any waxing is no problem at all during pregnancy. Well-shaped brows will not disturb your fetus.
Masters of Maternity Massage:
Consult your doctor:
Make sure these treatments are right for you
When you book:
- Make sure the spa knows how far along you are and what size robe you will need.
- Ask questions and express preferences:
- Ask about the experience of your therapist, aesthetician or nail technician.
- Male or Female Therapist tell the spa if you have a preference
Spa Xanadu is located just beneath the Foothills in the city of Arcadia. This quaint century old town has long been known for its outstanding, upscale, and peaceful community as well as appealing attractions, a city retreat where serenity reigns like no other. Their pleasant, dedicated, and highly skilled professionally trained staff welcomes you as part of their family with warmth and comfort. Your special needs are taken into consideration with personal customizing in every detail, making your visit unforgettable. Spa Xanadu understands that Pregnancy affects your body in a multitude of ways. Receiving massage on a regular basis during your pregnancy can be very beneficial to both you and your baby. Excess fluid retention and swelling are reduced while leg cramps, tension, back pain, and headaches are relieved. Your flexibility will be increased, making it easier to adjust to the additional weight and minimizing pressure on your joints.
Mama Mio Deluxe Pampering for the Super Mom:
Mama Mio was conceived in London by three friends, Kathy, Sian, and Tanya, who has worked in skincare for ten years. In that time we have had 7 babies between them and realized a need for specific, luxurious and safe creams that help the woman’s skin with the nine-months-t-r-e-t-c-h!
They worked with their favorite chemists and aromatherapists to create perfect pregnancy salvation products for the super mama. They have all been guinea pigs for Mama Mio, as have their friends and friends’ friends. Their products work, leaving a glowing skin, a dreamy smile, and the fragrances form a special part of the memory bank of lovely times. The scent, a blend of 10 pregnancy-specific essential oils, somehow smells just perfect to sensitive pregnant noses. As the demand throughout London grew for the wonderful Tummy Rub Stretch Mark Oil, they knew it was time to think big. The result is Mama Mio’s product line which is offered in fine spas along with their Spa Maternity treatment service.
Mama Mio Spa Treatments is available throughout the USA
Mama Mio Mama’s Touch™ Maternity Spa Treatments – There is no other time in a woman’s life when she more deserves to be luxuriously pampered than when she is pregnant.
Mama Mio Mama’s Touch™ is a special program of skin-salvation, indulgent maternity and post-pregnancy treatments designed to relax, comfort and nourish – all specifically designed to be totally safe and effective.
Mama Mio Mama’s Touch™ treatments are all individually created to alleviate the main issues of discomfort in pregnancy – increasing skin elasticity, nourishing parched skin, relieving itchy bellies, rejuvenating heavy legs, easing tired muscles and tension, assisting circulation and reducing water retention.
Use the restroom before your massage:
Pregnant women experience an increased need to urinate throughout their pregnancy. Make sure to use the restroom before your session. If you need to go during your massage just let the therapist know.
Any high-risk factors or medical problems should be discussed with the massage therapist before the session to ensure that massage is indicated. Including gestational diabetes and pregnancy-induced hypertension
Sensitive to scents:
Aromatherapy is offered in many pregnancy massages after the first trimester. Feel free to decline this feature if you are experiencing nausea or sensitivity at the time of your massage.
Verbalize your comfort level:
Too hot, too cold, not enough support? It is important that you feel comfortable and adequately supported by bolsters and pillows during your massage. Please let your therapist know if you are uncomfortable at any time during your session.
Drink plenty of water, before, during and after the service. It will help to flush the toxins released during the massage form the body.
Barefoot & Pregnant
Whether you are pregnant, a new mother, or simply need some well-deserved attention, their unique body and beauty treatments will relax, revive and rejuvenate. All treatments are designed with your safety and comfort in mind, and their estheticians and massage therapists are specially trained to take care of prenatal and postpartum women.
Barefoot & Pregnant is a sanctuary for expecting and new mothers. Designed especially with the prenatal woman in mind, Barefoot & Pregnant offers a place of community where women can come to connect, relax and rejuvenate. They meet the unique needs of new and expecting mothers with specialized spa services, retail therapy, and interactive education.
One USA location at the current time:
A spa within a maternity store, a Destination Maternity chain, you can shop, and then drop. “Everything is under one roof — from prenatal yoga to the latest maternity wear,” founder Rebecca Matthias says.
At Edamame Spa their philosophy is to offer exceptionally unique and restorative treatments to give balance and harmony to your body and soul. Their treatments focus on healthy solutions while delivering visible results, with an emphasis on making you look and feel beautiful during this very special time in your life.
The mission for Edamame Spa at Destination Maternity is to bring together a unique group of professional spa services including Facials, Massages, and Body Treatments, as well as at-home care products that will address your specific skin and body care needs before, during, and after pregnancy.
Edamame Spa Treatments locations
Pregnancy Massage vs. Non-Pregnancy Massage
Viva la difference!
Therapist training: Many massage therapists who regularly do pregnancy massage have advance training specifically in performing prenatal and postpartum massage.
Massage strokes: Massage strokes will vary between the massages and during the different trimesters of pregnancy. This is due to the elimination of some strokes that could cause nausea.
Table positioning: How the woman is positioned on the massage table changes for each trimester. During maternity massage, special tables, sideline or maternity pillows will be used.
Here’s to a Happy Healthy Pregnancy
The calmer and more relaxed you are the happier and more relaxed your baby will be. Recent studies have shown that the more stressed an expectant mother is, the more stressed her developing baby feels.
During the 40 weeks of pregnancy, a woman’s body undergoes many changes, some of which are stressful and uncomfortable. Massage is a perfect way to reduce stress, relieve tension, ease discomfort and promote general well being. Massage helps mom’s body to eliminate waste products through the lymphatic and circulatory systems, which combat fatigue and helps the mother feel more energetic. Massage also relieves many of the normal discomforts during pregnancy such as backaches, a stiff neck, leg cramps, headaches, and sore, swollen ankles and feet.
Pregnancy can be a wonderful time to discover the pampering environment of a well-run spa. If you can plan an entire spa vacation during pregnancy, take advantage of the great exercise classes that many facilities offer. However, you do not have to go far for a little rest and relaxation. You do not have to look beyond your favorite Day Spa for many of these services.
Although you are preparing to care for someone else, sometimes the best way to do that is to start caring for your own health and well-being.
Let your Maternity treatments begin. Locate your favorite spa using The Largest US Spa Directory.