If there is ever a time for a massage, it's postpartum. The sooner the better. Mom is sore and stiff, her bones are shifting. She's sleep-deprived and hormones are racing through her life-giving body. Biologically, a mother is wired to be hyper-focused on the needs of her newborn. It's easy to forget about self-care. However, the better she feels, the better she's able to happily care for her family. Massage therapy has been scientifically proven to speed up postpartum recovery time in a variety of ways:
Pain Relief: Whether it's residual discomfort from pregnancy, incredibly sore muscles from labor, or from the various contortions she finds herself in while caring for her newborn-- pain and physical discomfort is common postpartum. Endless studies have shown, and regular massage recipients will attest, that massage can significantly reduce acute and chronic pain.
Hormone Regulation: One of the best aspects of massage is the effect on our hormones and neurotransmitters. It literally reduces cortisol levels and increases oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins . The significance of this can not be overstated. Good massages quite literally make people happier.
Stress and Anxiety reduction: One can feel overwhelmed, lonely, or sad when faced with the life-changing responsibility of caring for a newborn or infant. Postpartum hormonal fluctuations can contribute to mental and emotional imbalances as well. Fortunately, Ann Arbor is a community rich with caring families and health professionals who can help. Massage therapy is a very useful tool for these types of symptoms and is strongly encouraged. Acupuncture is also a great option. Connecting with other moms of newborns, through a moms' group, can be tremendously helpful. If symptoms are severe, please reach out to your health care provider for assistance.