massage pregnancy safe

Is Massage Safe in Pregnancy?

massage pregnancy safeIs Massage Safe in Pregnancy?

A very good questions and one that you should ask! Pregnancy comes with many changes to the body (and mind) and a massage can help support mamas during this time. But is massage safe in pregnancy? Are all stages of pregnancy safe for massage?

Let's delve in and chat about it!

Pregnancy massage has been seen in many ancient cultures across the world, including Ayurvedic Medicine in India, so it's definitely not a modern day treatment.

I studied with Pregnancy Massage Australia under Catherine McInerney who is one of Australia's leading experts in pregnancy, labour and postnatal bodywork.

The general answer is yes, massage is safe in pregnancy, as long as it's undertaken by a specialist.

Some massage therapists will not massage clients in the first trimester in particular but it is safe, as long as your therapist is qualified and skilled in pregnancy massage.

"Common misconception and myths that pregnant women should not receive a massage in the first trimester have been addressed by the AAMT with its decision agreeing to first trimester massage – but only if it is undertaken by a trained pregnancy massage practitioner." Pregnancy Massage Australia

Sciatica and carpal tunnel pain can start early in pregnancy, so getting some relief with a massage treatment is a god-send for mamas. The nurturing and safe space to be held during a treatment is also really important for mamas who are feeling emotional and sensitive with the hormone changes.

A pregnancy massage specialist knows what to look for, what techniques to use and how to make the mama comfortable and safe for each stage of pregnancy.

Traditional massages involve you either lying on your back or on your stomach. In pregnancy, prolonged lying in these positions is not recommended, so it is really important that the correct positioning and support is used.

It is also important to communicate with your therapist and let them know of any medical issues or conditions you may be experiencing so they can adapt their treatment. And if at any time you feel uncomfortable or are in pain during a treatment, allow the therapist to assist you.

Some essential oils are contraindicated in pregnancy and can be dangerous. A pregnancy massage specialist will ensure only safe oils are used at each stage.

Finally, there are some parts of the body which should not be massaged during pregnancy and some which require a very light touch and definitely no deep tissue. So again, a specially trained massage therapist will be able to keep you safe at all times.

There are so many benefits of massage during pregnancy including:

  • improving sleep and rest
  • reducing stress and anxiety
  • reducing hip, back and shoulder pain
  • reducing headaches with hormonal changes
  • creating a mother-baby connection
  • improving mild nausea
  • reducing swelling
  • alleviating heartburn
  • improving circulation

I see all of these benefits first hand as a holistic maternal bodywork specialist, however I also found it interesting to read this study which found that women who received regular prenatal massage were found to have less premature labours, shorter labours with less need for medication and less pain and decreased depression and anxiety!

Just more reasons to give yourself the very best self care of mind, body and soul in pregnancy! Not only is massage safe in pregnancy, it is highly recommended.

You might like to support your pregnancy with some holistic products from our shop.

Much love,

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage SpecialistJess Ngaheu

Maternal Bodywork Specialist

Book A Session With Me Here

 

Source: Pregnancy Massage Australia

The Importance of Rest in Postpartum Care Postnal Recovery Newborn Baby

The Importance of Rest in Postpartum Care

The Importance of Rest in Postpartum Care Postnal Recovery Newborn Baby

The Importance of Rest in Postpartum Care

 

Over the weekend I started a four month immersion course called Yin Sanctuary and it really reminded me of the importance of rest in postpartum care.

The course is all about learning ancient wisdom, herbal medicine and ancestral traditional ways of postpartum care from the elders.

The day started with learning how to cook a Ayurvedic Meal for lunch which was put in the slow cooker, filled with vegetables and herbs. Then we learnt a traditional Japanese breakfast which consisted of miso soup and egg whilst layered in the most beautiful herbs.

It was incredible to learn new ways that I never knew existed.

Our very first speaker was matriarchal elder from Kombumerri land.... Cherie.

We started by giving thanks to the land and we got to listen some traditional aboriginal songs.

We heard about the ways that they have given birth in the creek on the Gold Coast that they call in for their traditional Birthing Waters. It was such an amazing experience and I felt so honoured to be part of this and learn.

One of the most important factors of postpartum recovery is rest. This allows your body to heal on its own.

Let's be honest, the female body is phenomenal. Women's bodies can create life, house them, grow them and give birth in whichever way baby may arrive .

If we truly take a moment to think about the fact that your body has grown a human inside of you, it's magical!

Whilst growing a baby, the body enables stretching of the ligaments and structural base of the womb. If you birth a baby naturally, your cervix open for baby to arrive and once baby has arrived within seconds the cervix closes back down again.... this is simply magical.

Here is a photo showing the sizing of the womb. After baby has arrived, the womb is still between 1kg to 1.5 kg, so with that much added weight inside your body, rest is even more important.

 

Womb Sizing Postnatal Recovery Post Part Healing

 

Your body goes through a lot of work in those nine months and we need to allow it to simply rest once your baby has arrived.

Rest will allow your body to heal by itself in time, so if you can try to rest for three weeks postpartum.

My advice is to start organising your postpartum plan whilst you are pregnant. Arrange some support to look after your other children, organise who will cook food and bring it to you and do the cleaning and the laundry.

We truly need to honour our body and give it time to heal.

During the rest phase,  you're also creating a bond with your baby which is so incredibly special and also needed for your baby's social and developmental skills later in life.

Bonding and attachment is vital for both mama and baby's wellness, physically and mentally.

So while you get to heal and be with your baby in bed for those three weeks you're also creating the foundation for your baby at the same time.

The saying 'it takes a village' is so true.

Pregnancy, birth and postpartum is such a sacred journey and we should honour it in the simplest yet most effective way...... with rest.

You might also like to read Your Holistic Postnatal Recovery Checklist.

Much love,

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist

Jess Ngaheu
Maternal Bodywork Specialist

Book a session with me here. 

Birth Hormones: What are they and how do they work?

Birth Hormones : What are they and how do they work?

Birth Hormones: What are they and how do they work?Birth Hormones : What are they and how do they work?

 

Hormones are such an amazing part of the human body. You and your baby are born with the ability to start labour, give birth, breastfeed and become deeply attached to each other via bonding with the flow of hormones running through your body.

It is very important that your health care providers and therapists are fully aware of the hormones that are present during pregnancy and understand not only how they work but also which ones need to be avoided.

OXYTOCIN

Also known as the "Love Hormone," oxytocin helps to increase uterine activity or contractions of the womb. Oxytocin stimulates the uterine muscles to contract and also increase production of prostaglandins which increase the contractions further.

There are ways that you can help the natural production of oxytocin during labour and birth:

  • Staying calm, comfortable and confident
  • Avoiding unwelcome people or noises
  • Staying upright and using gravity so baby can press against your cervix. Then as baby is born, against the pelvic floor tissues
  • Stimulating your nipples or clitoris before birth
  • Avoiding epidurals
  • Giving your baby a chance to breastfeed shortly after birth.

I remember when Vera-Rose was born the midwife placed her on my chest and she found her way straight to the breast and started suckling.... it was an amazing experience. I highly recommend you do this and let your midwife know this before you give birth. Then once baby is latched, do not let anyone interfere with you. Have that first moment with your little one. It starts the foundation of what is to come between you and your beautiful baby.

ENDORPHINS

When you are going through some stress or pain, your body can produce calming and pain-relieving hormones called endorphins.  You may have higher levels towards the end of your pregnancy.

For woman who don't use pain medication during labour, the levels can steadily rise through the birth of your baby. Studies have found a sharp drop in endorphin levels with use of epidurals.

High endorphin levels during labor and birth can produce an altered state of consciousness that can help you deal with the process of giving birth, even if it is long and challenging. High endorphin levels can make you feel alert, attentive and even euphoric after birth, as you begin to get to know and care for your baby.

In this early postpartum period, endorphins are believed to play a role in strengthening the mother-infant relationship. A drop in endorphin levels at this time may contribute to the "blues" or postpartum depression, that many women experience for a brief time after birth.

You can enhance your body's production of endorphins during labor and birth by:

  • Staying calm, comfortable and confident.
  • Avoiding disturbances, such as unwelcome people or noise and uncomfortable procedures.
  • Delaying or avoiding epidural or opioids for pain relief.

ADRENALINE
Adrenaline is the "fight or flight" hormone that humans produce to help ensure survival. Women who feel threatened during labor (for example, by fear or severe pain) may produce high levels of adrenaline. Adrenaline can slow labor or stop it altogether. Earlier in human evolution, this disruption helped birthing women move to a place of greater safety.

Too much adrenaline can cause problems in labor and birth by:

  • Causing distress to the baby before birth.
  • Causing contractions to stop, slow or have an erratic pattern, and lengthening labor.
  • Creating a sense of panic and increasing pain in the mother.
  • Leading health care providers to respond to these problems with caesarean surgery and other interventions.

You can keep adrenaline down during labor and birth by:

  • Staying calm, comfortable and relaxed.
  • Being informed and prepared.
  • Having trust and confidence in your body and your capabilities as a woman.
  • Having trust and confidence in your care providers and birth setting.
  • Being in a calm, peaceful and private environment and avoiding conflict.
  • Being with people who can provide comfort measures, good information, positive words and other support.
  • Avoiding intrusive, painful, disruptive procedures.

PROLACTIN

Prolactin is known as the “mothering” hormone. The role of prolactin around the time of birth has been less researched than the hormones described above. It increases during pregnancy and peaks when labor starts on its own.

As has been shown in other mammals, continued prolactin production during and after labor appears to be readying a woman’s body for breastfeeding. It may also play a role in moving labor along and helping the newborn adjust to life outside the womb.

Prolactin is central to breast milk production. High levels of prolactin with early breastfeeding may foster women’s caretaking behaviors and adjustment to being a mother. This hormone may also support the infant’s healthy development.

Low levels of prolactin may cause problems through:

  • Poorer transition of the baby at the time of birth.
  • Poorer growth and development of the baby.
  • Poorer adjustment of a woman to motherhood.

You can likely promote your body’s production of prolactin by:

  • Waiting for labor to start on its own.
  • Minimizing stress during labor and after birth.
  • Keeping woman and baby together after birth.
  • Breastfeeding early and thereafter on cue from the baby.

MAXIMISING THE ROLE OF BIRTH HORMONES

As you can probably tell from the information above, some features of typical hospital childbirth settings, like noise or medical interventions, can interfere with your body’s natural processes. To avoid this and maximize your body’s ability to follow its natural processes, it’s a good idea to seek out a birth setting that supports this.

Out-of-hospital birth settings and one-on-one continuous labor support, such as doula care, can help create conditions that enhance your body’s natural production of helpful hormones and keep disturbing hormones in check. You can also create your own birthing room. And if you are birthing within the hospital you have every right to design that room how you wish. You can take your own music, have photos or birth affirmations in that room.

I have many contacts for some beautiful doulas and if you would like some information on them, then please reach out.

Your birth can be how you wish it to be and I truly wish I knew all of the information I know now, before I birthed my son Hawaiki.

You might like to help your body get ready for birth with my Labour Preparation Experience.

While in labour, the following products can also assist:

Labour and Birth Flower Essence Blend

Full Bloom Pregnancy and Labour Herbal Tea

Metamorphosis: Intention Candle for Birthing

Empowered Birth Balm

Much love,

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist
JESS NGAHEU
Maternal Bodywork Specialist

Book a session with me here.

 

 

Hoslitic Postnatal Postpartum Recovery

Your Holistic Post Natal Recovery Checklist

Holistic Postnatal Postpartum Recovery

Your Holistic Post Natal Recovery Checklist

 

A nourishing post natal period has so many benefits, for both mama and baby, so today I wanted to share your holistic post natal recovery checklist with some things I think are imperative for EVERY mama.

Centuries ago the recovery phase for postpartum was HUGE! So much was given to the mother to recover. Everything was taken care of in the home when the baby arrived so the mother and baby could bond, rest and recover.

Mamas were given massages daily and nutritious food was cooked to help repair the postpartum body. Our bodies go through so much change, physically, emotionally and spiritually to give birth to a baby.

Whether baby has arrived vaginally, caesarean or assisted.....mums need to be taken care of!  Somewhere along the way this precious healing time has been lost in the expectation that we need to bounce back and get on with life. In fact, without adequate recovery, you can risk adrenal burnout, heavy bleeding, breast infections and postpartum depression.

I love that there is gradually more awareness and respect for the postpartum recovery and mamas are starting to look after them selves during this period. I also think it's important to have a holistic perspective to the fourth trimester as birthing is such a whole mind, body and soul experience!

So, here are some things I think are great to think about for your post natal recovery checklist:

Rest

This one might be obvious, but it's maybe the most important. I am talking about full bed rest and lots of sleep here, not just 'taking it easy.' Many Eastern cultures have a tradition of six weeks of absolute bed rest after you give birth! However, I do recommend a little gentle movement in addition to your rest.

Water

Hydration is incredibly important as labour causes a lot of water loss in the body. It also helps with breastfeeding, preventing constipation and repairing the body. You might want to have Postpartum Healing Herbal Tea as some of your water quota.

Nutrition

It's incredibly important to eat nourishing, warm, nutrient-dense foods in your fourth trimester. There are some great resources around including the book The First Forty Days by Heng Ou.

Foods like bone broth, soups, stews, good sources of protein and eggs and healthy, whole foods are vital. Check out these Postpartum Healing Bone Broth Powder and Strips that have been specially formulated with herbs and foods for post natal nourishment. Bliss balls and trail mix make great snacks!

 

Postnatal postpartum bodywork specialist Gold Coast

Bodywork
You knew I was going to say this, didn't you??? Postnatal massage is so supportive and nurturing and assists your body in the recovery process. Check out my Postnatal Healing Experience - I come to your home for four tailored sessions that include restoring core and pelvic floor, pelvic floor strengthening, breathwork and meditation.

Support

Set up a support team to help you recover! This might look like family and friends to help with housework and cooking while you recover, a postnatal bodywork specialist and a postpartum doula. You can read about one of my mama's experience here.

Finding a mother's group can also help you in the months after birth. Surrounding yourself with like-minded mamas can be your saviour!

Herbs

Mother Nature has so many beautiful traditional herbs to help our postnatal recovery. You can drink nourishing herbal tea, use herbs to heal the perineum area as well as using herbal balms on your body.

Nurture

Nurturing yourself and supporting your emotional well-being is also a really important aspect of postnatal healing. While the 'baby blues' are normal, it's important to take care of your mental health.

Becoming a mother is a huge transition and it may bring up all sorts of feelings and emotions.

My Postpartum Flower Essences and Intention Candles are helpful in supporting your emotional wellbeing. Placenta encapsulation can also be helpful for stabilising emotions (as well as physical recovery). Consider meditation and breath work or even just listening to some calming music to keep you relaxed.

Baby Massage

Once your baby is six weeks old, baby massage is one beautiful way you can connect and bond with your new baby and support your mental and emotional wellbeing. There are just so many benefits of baby massage!

My Holistic Baby Massage Classes are starting very soon and I would love to support you and your baby.

 

I would love to hear what else has helped you in your postpartum recovery! What should I add to your holistic postnatal recovery checklist?

Leave me a comment or chat to me on social media.

Much love,

 

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist

 

Jess Ngaheu

Maternal Bodywork Specialist

Book a session with me here.

All About The I Am Healing Centre

All About The I Am Healing Centre

I feel so grateful to work from the I Am Healing centre on Fridays, so I thought I would tell you a bit more about this magical space.

As you know, I need to feel a deep connection and alignment with all collaborations connected to Maternal Grounding.

The I Am Healing centre is the perfect fit for me!

It has the same beautiful, nurturing energy that is the very core of my business with the space that I hold for my mamas. It was so important to me that I work from a space that makes my mamas feel loved, welcome and relaxed as soon as they walk in the door.

Sonia at I Am Healing has created the most beautiful sanctuary with a very high vibrational energy. The Heart Chakra symbol as the basis of their logo is a bit of a giveaway about the love vibe they have going on!!

All About The I Am Healing Centre

About I Am Healing:

I Am Healing is a sacred spiritual centre, located on the northern Gold Coast at De Barnett Street in Coomera. The centre has practitioner rooms offering many different types of modalities and therapies and there is also a beautiful shop where you can buy handmade local gifts, books, cards, oils, crystals, jewellery and so much more.

The holistic I AM practitioners are a very special group of humans who welcome everybody from all walks of life, with a real desire to help in any way they can. You can choose from modalities such as Meditation, Yoga, Qi Gong, Tai Chi, Kundalini, Readings, Counselling, Numerology, Past Life Regression, Healing Massage, Reiki, Craniosacral Therapy, Naturopathy, Bowen Therapy, Breath Work and more.

I Am Healing also offers group sessions of meditation and yoga and fun workshops in the beautiful studio space.

Sonia from I Am Healing

About Sonia:

Sonia is the amazing visionary behind the I AM Healing Centre Coomera whose passion is to assist all walks of life to return to love.

From a young age Sonia was curious about life, and often wondered why we were all here on earth, and what our purpose here was. She discovered Yoga and Meditation and this is where the real healing began. Sonia started to honour her gifts of intuition and connection to all things, and use them to help herself and many around her.

Sonia had a vision to open a sacred space: a space that people would walk into and instantly feel loved and safe and she has achieved this and so much more!

 

Follow I Am Healing:

I Am Healing website
I Am Healing Facebook 
I Am Healing Instagram
Location: 1/7-9 De Barnett Street, Coomera, Gold Coast

Bookings:
If you would like to experience my services in the beautiful sacred space that is I Am Healing, you can book in with me on Fridays here. Come and see why it's so magical!!
Much love,

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist
Jess Ngaheu

Maternal Bodywork Specialist

Book a session with me here.

Flower Essences for Motherhood Support

Flower Essences for Motherhood Support

Flower Essences for Motherhood Support

Flower Essences for Motherhood Support

Using flower essences for motherhood support are a great natural remedy to assist with all stages of pregnancy, labour and postpartum.

Flower essences use the energetic imprint of the flowering part of  Australian native plants. Essence from the flower is then stored in filtered water and a very small amount of alcohol to preserve the essence. That's all they contain. They are very safe to use by anyone with any condition or alongside any medication.

 

Flower Essences for Motherhood Support

 

The part that I think is truly amazing is that flower essences work on the subtle energy field of the body. They work on the emotional, mental and spiritual conditions we hold on to. Essences can help shift the negative emotions, negative thought patterns and beliefs to unlock your full potential and bring about harmony and balance. They can help move stuck, stagnant energy and emotions and restore calm and balance.

I think they are just the most magical holistic healing remedy and the best part is they are made from flowers that are grown from the ground aka Mother Earth. They are plant energy medicine, also known as vibrational remedies.

I have three specially hand-crafted flower essence blends I offer to my mamas. I have commissioned them locally on the Gold Coast from Yogi Tree who makes everything with love, heart and soul.

 

 

In the shop, I have customised flower essence remedies for Pregnancy, Birth/Labour and Postpartum.

You take seven drops under the tongue, morning and night at least thirty minutes away from food, drink and brushing of teeth. You can take them every ten minutes in times of high emotional need as well.

Pregnancy Flower Essence Blend is especially for pregnant mamas to help with confidence, calm, balance, trust in your journey, self love and acceptance.

Labour and Birth Flower Essence Blend is made for mamas in labour and the childbirth process to help with endurance, mother and child connection, openness and grounding.

Postpartum Flower Essence Blend is prepared for mamas who have just given birth to assist with connection, holistic balance, healing, bonding and transformation.

Flower Essences for Motherhood Support

I will work on getting some other ones for motherhood in general and I highly recommend giving them a try.

Daily life can be such a struggle and especially right now with the world turning upside down, we can feel overwhelmed and anxious. The flower essence blends can help keep us grounded, balanced and calm which is what our babies need from us!

You can find out more here.

As always if you have any questions at all, please send get in touch. I am always here!

Much love,

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist

Jess Ngaheu 
Maternal Bodywork Specialist

Book a session with me here.

The Benefits of Baby Massage

 The Benefits of Baby Massage

 

The benefits of baby massage are so amazing, that it honestly just blows my mind how much we can help our babies develop with such a tool!

I have experienced the developmental benefits of baby massage first-hand with my son and I will explain some of those below. Here are the benefits of massaging your baby regularly:

 

Touch

Touch is one of the most underrated benefits to your baby's development. Babies need and desire touch, just as much as they need and require food. This is so important for their overall well being.

Our skin is a vital sensory organ. It is the first organ developed by a baby in the womb and it is made of the same embryonic tissue as our brains. The skin is as thirsty for sensory experience as is the brain. The effect of skin contact, or the lack of it, can have profound consequences on all the systems of our bodies.

The importance of touch for babies is now well-known but this has not always been the case. In the early 19th century in America there was a high death rate in babies under the age of one raised in orphanages. This caused concern, especially as the babies were being provided with food, warmth and shelter. What the babies lacked however, was skin contact, or touch from their carers. The babies were only handled when absolutely necessary. The lack of touch and skin stimulation led to their nervous systems not developing properly and the babies became depressed, withdrawn and eventually died.

Bonding

The simple fact that you hold, touch and massage your baby gives them a sense of safeness. Bonding can take time, however baby massage plays an important part in beginning, enhancing and continuing the bonding process. Many studies have been conducted on the way that parents and babies bond and a number of key factors have been identified in the process.

Establishing a good bond between a carer and baby is so important and baby massage is a really effective technique to enhance that.  Bonding is super important for the mother to feel connected to their own baby and in return being able to meet the baby's needs.

Mother and baby bonding will help make the baby feel safe and secure, so they feel like they can trust their mother. It is like a safe net for both mum and baby really.

Attachment

Baby massage can help create the feeling of attachment between you and your baby. Massaging your baby every day shows them that you are the one they can trust. This will, in turn, create a bond and attachment between you and your baby.

Minimising Post Natal Depression

Bonding with baby is super important for the mother to heal after birth. Lack of bonding is thought to be one factor involved in post natal depression in new mothers. When becoming a new mother it can be such a hard journey, always second guessing yourself that you are doing everything correctly.

So bonding with your newborn can make you feel confident in what you are doing with your baby and help your mental health. If mothers feel like they are not bonding with their baby, this can have huge affect on the mother's mental health.

Eye contact

Making eye contact with your baby whilst massaging them is very beneficial and important. Eye contact helps mama and baby to recognise each other and aids in communication.

Relaxation

Massage is very important for aiding relaxation and reducing stress both for the parent and the baby. Our bodies naturally produce a group of hormones which help us to quickly raise blood pressure, increase heart rate and prepare muscles for movement when the body is under threat.

When you massage a baby, the baby’s body produces a hormone called oxytocin which belongs to a group of “feel good hormones“. These hormones help to lower the levels of stress hormones in the body and therefore help to lower blood pressure, heart rate, and improve appetite.

Stimulation and Development

This is my favourite benefit of massage and one of the reasons why I want to help as many babies as I can.

The development of the brain through massage is absolutely phenomenal. It can help the myelination process grow as massage is stimulating your baby to discover their senses.

Myelination is the process of coating the axon of each neuron with a fatty coating called myelin, which protects the neuron and helps it conduct signals more efficiently. So massaging your baby can help build those signals to deliver messages more effectively and at a greater speed.

The most active parts of the brain at birth are the sensory motor cortex, the thalamus, the brainstem and the cerebellum. The cortex of the brain is not yet able to function and therefore babies are not capable of complex thinking. This part of the brain develops as myelination of the nerves occurs over time.

Studies have shown that in some cases where babies and children have been deprived of sensory input through the nervous system due to lack of tactile stimulation and human interaction, areas of brain development can be prevented which can result in behavioural/social/emotional problems later in life.

A recent study on the effect of maternal contact during infancy suggests that the brain cells of a baby not exposed to maternal touch can degenerate and die as a result of such deprivation thus impeding the development of the infant.

I can personally vouch for this amazing research on baby development through massage with my son. My son had a very traumatic birth and was also born 5 weeks prematurely. He was born with no heart rate, no oxygen and no blood. He was resuscitated and then he had seizures immediately.

In the very first week of his life, he was in the incubator as we were trying to save his life. He was not held or cuddled AT ALL for the first few days of his life. And on day 5, he had an MRI of brain which showed brain damage. He was in hospital for a month at the start.

Then he had another MRI at 6 weeks old which showed some white matter in which they did not know what it was and the myelination on his brain had not developed at all. It was the same as when he was first born. But myelination should be growing and developing day by day.

I still remember that day like it was yesterday.

An entire group of specialists in a room telling me they did not know what exactly was wrong. They had numerous ideas and one of them was he had a degenerative disease, in which the brain was building the myelination but then breaking it down back to zero.

When I asked for help with therapies at the hospital, no one would help me.

They just kept saying, let him rest and be a baby. But deep within me, I knew there needed to be more done. So I started to use massage and movement every day for just 10 minutes.

I wanted to stimulate his senses to try and help his development. 6 weeks later he had another MRI of the brain and the white matter had now disappeared and his brain had developed to where it should be. The brain injury from birth is still there, as we can not undo that damage and he still has many issues.

But helping with the process of building the myelination, I know, came from stimulating his senses from massage, movement and touch. Also I believe that no longer being in an incubator and being held, touched and loved helped so much as well.

The power of touch is amazing…. I have lived through it with my son and the changes it made to my sons brain- blows me away.

I can never take away or cure the brain damage that he suffered during birth. But this has helped in so many ways. Not only for him but for me. To see that i have been a change to my son's life has honestly helped me along my own healing from trauma journey.

 

There are so many reasons why massaging your baby is beneficial! I highly recommend that you do it daily with your baby.

If you would like some help, I offer a Baby Massage Session where as well as massaging baby, I also show parent's how to do it.

I also have Holistic Baby Massage Workshops! These are a fun, interactive four week courses for mum and baby. These have very limited places, so sign up to my newsletter to find out the details of the next course.

You might also like to read some more of my articles! Come and say hello on Facebook or Instagram.

Much love,

 

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage SpecialistJess Ngaheu, Maternal Bodywork Specialist

BOOK A SESSION WITH ME HERE

 

Maternal Grounding’s Healing Balms

Maternal Grounding's Healing BalmsMaternal Grounding's Healing Balms

How did Maternal Grounding's Healing Balms come about? When I very first started my business, I really wanted to have amazing services to cater for an entire community of mums and their babies. I also had a dream to share the very products I use and truly believe in and for you to have access to these products in between appointments with me.

It makes me so happy to be able to provide you with these now in my shop, after finding the PERFECT products to use through pregnancy, labour, postnatal, motherhood and on our babies.

I wanted to share with you a little about how I came to finding these.

It actually started when a business friend of mine had her baby and booked me for some deep postnatal healing massages. She posted about it online and then Michelle Palasia (who I am doing the Post Natal Healing Workshop with) contacted me to see if I would be interested in massaging some of her birth and postnatal clients. I, of course, said yes and jumped at this chance as I had just started working again after having a quite a while off after the birth of my son Hawaiki.

Michelle had then also posted about me online and this lead to a lot of new followers and people really seeing and valuing my work.  This then led to Lou from Yogi Tree seeing my work and we formed a connection as we were both working and creating services for mamas.

I got a beautiful new client after Lou had recommended me. Lou is an amazing Placenta Encapsulation Specialist.  I highly recommend jumping on her page on Instagram or her website and get in contact with her if you are interested in this service.

Now after some time I realised that she is also a beautifully creative person that makes the most heavenly products for pregnancy, labour and postnatal mums and babies. So I made an enquiry and was given some testers and as soon as I just felt the jars of balms..... I knew this is exactly what I wanted!

You can literally feel the pure love and energy that she puts into these amazing products. Not only does she hand-make everything, she even grows some of the ingredients she uses herself.

So I wanted to share with you today the divine balms that Lou makes for me for the Maternal Grounding Shop.

I know you will love them as much as I do!

Empowered Birth Balm

Empowered Birth Balm

This beautiful healing Empowered Birth Balm is designed to support mamas during their birthing process. With all natural ingredients, it is totally safe for birthing mamas from 38 weeks.

 

Organic blue cohosh and red raspberry leaf are gently infused into coconut oil and combined with shea butter, local beeswax, jojoba oil and pure essential oils of rose, clary sage, geranium and frankincense.

Lovingly massage this balm into your belly, lower back and hips to support your body in preparation for birth. Use from 38 weeks and throughout your labour and birth process.

Shop here for the Empowered Birth Balm.

 

Postpartum Warming Recovery Balm

 

Postpartum Warming Recovery Balm

This  beautiful healing and nurturing Postpartum Warming Recovery balm is designed to support mamas to recover after the birthing process. With all natural ingredients, it will help boost circulation, ease aches and pains and return heat to the body after labour.

 

Organic lemongrass, ginger, black pepper, fennel, cinnamon and turmeric are gently infused with calendula, comfrey, coconut and almond oils and combined with arnica, shea butter and local beeswax.

While this Warming Recovery balm is perfect for immediately after giving birth, the Postpartum Healing Balm for Mums and Babies is perfect for ongoing use after the recovery period.

Mindfully massage a small amount into the womb-space, lower back and any sore muscles post birth. You can also apply to acupressure points and soles of the feet.

Shop here for the Postpartum Warming Recovery Balm.

Postpartum Healing Balm for Mum & Baby

Postpartum Healing Balm for Mum & Baby

This beautiful Postpartum Healing Balm for Mum and Baby is designed to soothe and heal in the post natal period. With all natural ingredients, it is totally safe for mamas, babies and breastfeeding use.

 

Organic calendula, comfrey and chamomile are slow-infused into coconut, olive and avocado oils and combined with soothing shea butter and local beeswax.
You can apply to any areas of mama or baby's body that requires soothing and healing. It works well on sore or cracked nipples, the perineum, dry irritated skin, scars, nappy rash and cradle cap.

 

Maternal Grounding's Healing Balms are truly magical! They are all plant-based, totally natural and made with love especially for mums and babies.

If you have any questions at all about any of the products, please do not hesitate to contact me, as I would love to be share more about how they can support you.

Much love,

 

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist

Jess Ngaheu, Maternal Bodywork Specialist

BOOK A SESSION WITH ME HERE

How to Relieve Carpal Tunnel Syndrome During Pregnancy

How to Relieve Carpal Tunnel Syndrome During Pregnancy

How to Relieve Carpal Tunnel Syndrome During Pregnancy

How to Relieve Carpal Tunnel Syndrome During Pregnancy

 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a very common condition that affects many pregnant and postnatal mamas. So I want to share with you my tips on how to relieve carpal tunnel syndrome in pregnancy.


I had this condition at the very beginning of my pregnancy with my son and it was actually the first sign that I knew I was pregnant!

The pain was absolutely horrible and I had never experienced it before.


What is the Carpal Tunnel?

The carpal tunnel is the narrow passageway found on the inside of the wrist where nerves and tendons pass from the arm into your hand and fingers.

When the carpal tunnel is compressed it will then effect the functioning of the flexor tendons and the median nerve as they pass through the tunnel.

Carpal Tunnel Sydrome can cause pins and needles, numbness and stiff painful hands. It affects 30-50% of pregnant woman, making it very common!

Conditions that can cause carpal tunnel in pregnancy are inflammation and edema (swelling), along with poor biomechanics and repetitive strain. I know that being a massage therapist and the repetitive movements of my hands and wrists are what triggered mine.

During pregnancy hormones cause retention of fluid and they also soften the ligament that forms the roof of the carpal tunnel. When this happens the nerve running through the tunnel may become squashed, resulting in pain. 

Postnatal carpal tunnel can also onset if not already present from poor biomechanics of holding the baby, and hand positions when breastfeeding. Edema and inflammation may also be present during the postnatal recovery.

 

Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

* Pins and needles
* Numbness
* Pain (which may be worse at night)
* Burning sensation in the fingers
* Radiating pain into the arm & shoulder
* Sharp darting pains in the wrist

How to relieve symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

*Avoid any positions or activities that make symptoms worse
* Avoid heavy lifting
* Avoid repetitive tasks
* Elevate hand
* Sit on chairs with armrests and elevate affected hand
* Apply ice wrapped in a tea towel over wrist for 10-15 minutes every couple of hours (do not put ice directly on skin)
* Wear a compression bandage
* Wear a wrist splint (especially at night) to keep wrist straight (neutral)
* Perform regular fluid drainage massage and gentle exercises
* Gentle exercise can provide a muscle pumping action to reduce swelling
* Make a fist, then spread your fingers, move wrist forwards and backwards and bend and straighten your elbow
* Keep your shoulder, elbow and hands moving normally to stop your arm becoming stiff
* Dont leave your arm hanging down by your side for long periods of time.
* Eat less salty foods
* Lying down to rest during the day
* Elevating your legs when sitting
* Wear compression garments

I hope this information on how to relieve Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in pregnancy is helpful to you!  If you need any help or info at all, don't hesitate to get in touch. 

Much Love,

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist

BOOK A SESSION WITH ME HERE

 

References: Pregnancy Massage Australia

The Importance of Postpartum Care and Support

The Importance of Postpartum Care and Support

The Importance of Postpartum Care and Support

One of the biggest misconceptions that we have around the postnatal period is that we need to get back our pre-baby body and go back to the domestic duties or work straight away! I wanted to share with you today some thoughts about the importance of postpartum care and support. 

Society has warped us in to thinking it's normal to get straight back into life and 'get your body back'! I believe we need to slow down and honour this period of time.  We need rest and to spend time in a cocoon-like environment to nurture and honour ourselves and our new baby. 

Family and friends hopefully can come and help take care of the chores and household duties so we can recover from such a transformational experience, whilst nurturing and honouring what our body has been through. 

Those precious moments you have with a new born baby are so important. 

This is also a time when we should be nourishing our body with herbs and nutrients to repair the physiological changes that have just occurred. These changes to our body were not small!  They were huge! Creating and growing a human life inside our bodies is simply remarkable. 

I am currently studying postpartum recovery and something interesting I have learnt is that the first 42 days postpartum is so imperative for support and proper healing as it sets you up for the next 42 years!

Here are some really important things to consider (that I think we all really need to know about postnatal healing):

Mother Nature and Hormones :

Both mother and baby receive the benefits of powerful and restorative hormones such as oxytocin which help in part with bonding. Beta-endorphins act as natural opioids, helping to stabilise stress, reduce fatigue and restore balance. Prolactin helps with lactation. The physical intimacy and closeness that the mother and baby unit experience along with eye contact, nuzzling at the breast and bonding through the physical care of the newborn, enable these hormones to release in the proper amounts thus promoting all of the natural benefits that aid in healing and rebalancing. It's a perfectly beautiful, natural support system!

Adrenal Burnout:

Unfortunately, it is very common for women to suffer from the effects of adrenal burnout in the post partum period. Some mothers may have had a stressful or long labour and delivery, which is often complicated by unnecessary medical intervention. They may not know the proper knowledge or education relating to post partum care. A lot of this can be then exacerbated if mothers do not rest and recover in the first 42 days. Sometimes if this cycle of fatigue and stress is left unsupported for too long, this can lead to a true clinical state of postpartum depression.

So rest and support in the postpartum period is imperative in so many ways!

I feel such a strong pull to help woman and make a positive difference in today's society, so I am continuing my studies into postnatal care. I have already studied postnatal healing, nutrition, wellness, massage (the list goes on) and now I am also studying Ayurvedic Post Natal Doula training.

My inspiration is to be of service to postnatal mamas using the teachings of ancient wisdom.  This aspect will help me  create some beautiful offerings for nourishing and restorative postpartum care. 

Much love, 

Jess Ngaheu Pregnancy and Post Natal Massage Specialist

BOOK A SESSION WITH ME HERE