Foot Massage & Pregnancy: The On-Going Debate
A lot of people are told that it is unsafe to have foot massage in pregnancy because of acupressure points in the feet. It is true that there are acupressure points that are believed to aid in bringing on natural labour when stimulated properly by a trained professional. However, it is not easy to stimulate these points accidentally. Given that it requires specific actions to stimulate acupressure points in the foot, it is safe to say that general foot massage while pregnant will cause no harm to you or your baby. In fact, specific pregnancy foot massage is highly beneficial for the mother.
In a recently published article entitled, “Massage & Pregnancy,” author and expert, Jean Jenkins, writes:
“Proponents of foot massage for pregnant women claim it has undeniable powers over the pregnant body, while opponents range from cautious and skeptical to adamantly opposed to the validity of these claims,” adding that claims of foot massage having a powerful influence over the body go back thousands of years, originating in Egypt.
And today, the debate, whether it’s beneficial or detrimental, rages on. Some experts who are proponents of prenatal foot massage say that massaging and applying pressure on particular parts of the feet can have a profound affect on pregnancy; and therapists are trained to recognize and avoid these points on the feet of pregnant women, as they could send them into early, naturally induced labor. Yet, those opposing experts in the field concede that most massage can relieve stress, however many reflexologists describe stress in terms that do not correspond to scientific knowledge.
Whether you choose to engage in prenatal foot massage or not, Jenkins concludes with one final caveat:
“Consult with your obstetrician before engaging in foot massage. This could be contraindicated in some patients. Consult with your doctor regarding any conditions that reflexology or massage therapists may diagnose or treat. This could lead to a delay of necessary medical care.”
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