If you are one of the millions of women who are currently pregnant, you may be dealing with a whirlwind of emotions. From the physical stress of your changing body and the overwhelming feeling of fatigue to the constant emotional roller coaster, it is easy to see how pregnancy is stressful and overwhelming. Fortunately, there are many ways to relax your body and mind while pregnant. To determine if a foot massage and pedicure is an option for you, understanding the health benefits is key.
When scheduling a foot massage, be sure to choose a professional massage therapist who understands the pregnant body. Professional massage therapists must understand how contractions can be triggered while massaging the area between your anklebone and heel. For obvious reasons, these areas should be avoided during your foot massage.
If you are visiting a nail salon, it may be best to avoid a pedicure. In most cases, nail technicians are not experienced with prenatal massage.
The benefits of a foot massage while pregnant are enormous. During your third trimester, your feet and ankles may begin to swell and ache. Known as edema, this swelling and redness is not only uncomfortable, but can also be dangerous as your pregnancy progresses. A foot massage, by a professional massage therapist, can ease this swelling to prevent future issues and pain. In addition, a foot massage can relieve the overall aches and pain you are feeling from carrying the extra weight.
A large portion of the female population enjoys tanning at their local salon or outdoors. While the added vitamin d is healthy, pregnant women should avoid excessive amounts of sun due to possible sunburns. As your body grows in pregnancy, your skin streches to accomodate for the required space your baby needs. This stretching places you at a higher risk for burning while in the sun or in a tanning bed.
In some cases, excessive sun exposure while pregnant may cause you to develop dark splotches on your skin. This is called chloasma. The increase of body temperature while sun bathing or tanning is also dangerous for your body and the health of your unborn child.
Thankfully, there are options if you want to enhance your pregnancy glow or create a sun-kissed look. To naturally tan, consider a tanning creme or lotion. Tanning lotions are not only harmless, but many brands offer added vitamins and nutrients suited to your body’s changes. Opt for a lotion that offers cocoa butter, as well. Cocoa butter is a great option for pregnant skin because it reduces the risk of permanent stretch marks, which is a common complaint in a woman’s post-pregnancy body.
Be sure to follow all instructions on the label of your tanning lotion to ensure you apply an adequate amount to your body.
Pregnancy is a wonderful experience. However, proper precautions are necessary to ensure the health of your baby and your own physical and emotional well being.