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At 40 weeks of your pregnancy, your baby is all set to make its grand entry into the world anytime soon. More and more visitors will come to your house to check on you and no wonder you will be anxious, stressed and worried. This is something most, if not every, expecting mother goes through.
What is Reflexology?
Reflexology, also called zone therapy, is an alternative medicine therapy that involves the stimulation of the body by applying pressure on the feet, using your fingers and hands.
How Does Reflexology Help Induce Labour?
The days prior to labour can be extremely stressful for a mother-to-be. The struggle is real. Reflexology involves applying pressure on certain points of the footpad to produce a calming effect on the body. But can reflexology induce labour? The few days leading to labour are the most stressful but undergoing reflexology treatment can have a calming effect on an expecting mother. This process kick starts several conditions and helps improve and stimulate labour. In addition to this, reflexology can help pregnant women administer their energies towards a more positive side as well.
Reflexology Points for Labour Induction
These are the reflex points to induce labour –
- The adrenal gland – The adrenal gland is a key player in giving the body endurance and energy. It also strengthens the immune system and increases the ability to manage stress. Reflexology can help induce the secretion of adrenaline from the adrenal gland.
- The pituitary gland – Found at the base of the brain and known as the ‘master gland’, the pituitary gland is responsible for the secretion and management of all the hormones in your body. Applying pressure on the centre of the toe pads has an effect on the pituitary gland. A light but effective pressure of two to three minutes is applied to the centre of each toe, first on the right foot, and then on the left. When this is done, the brain produces oxytocin, which is responsible for uterine contractions. Uterine contractions are essential during labour. You might feel your baby move a lot during the treatment, and you do not have to worry, as this is normal.
- Spleen 6 – Stimulating the spleen can induce uterine contractions as well. Pressure is applied at Spleen 6 to reduce labour pain. For this, the pressure is applied a little above the inside of the ankles.
How Many Session Will You Need?
Reflexology has been gaining popularity. If you have been administered with this treatment throughout your pregnancy, then the chances are that the process of inducing labour will be much easier and effective on you. However, if you are new to this, then indulging in this process three to four weeks before your due date, about once or twice a week, is recommended. If you are overdue, then you can have a two-hour session, until you feel that your contractions are coming.
Who Should Avoid Reflexology?
Firstly, everyone must consult a gynaecologist or a family doctor before going in for these sessions. Women with a history of miscarriage must avoid reflexology, as well as women who have had other pregnancy complications like pre-eclampsia and the likes. Women who have deep-vein thrombosis need to avoid this as well. Make sure you do not undertake this treatment if you have any kind of foot injury.
Can Reflexology Ease Your Labour Pain?
While doctors have considered reflexology to start labour, there is no guarantee that it can ease your labour pain. No two women are the same. It is said that the benefits of reflexology help in easing labour pains. Women who have undergone this treatment have said that it has a calming effect on them and that their labour was shorter and easier.
Pregnancy can be an overwhelming time, especially when the due date is looming near. At this time, reflexology and tender loving care is probably everything that you need. Go ahead and get yourself this treatment.