Perineal massage, here's how it works

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Marie-Ange Demory
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Perineal massage

Most women want to deliver their children without having a laceration or having an episiotomy. Regularly massaging the perineum (the area between the vagina and the anus) can help make the tissues more flexible and elastic during delivery. "This increases the likelihood that it will remain unscathed," explains a midwife. But what does the perineal massage, and what is its real effectiveness? 




In this article

  • When to start perineal massage
  • What is needed?
  • How the massage is done
  • Exercises for the perineum
  • Perineal massage by the partner

When to start perineal massage

It is not necessary to massage the perineal area from the beginning. It is enough to start about six weeks in advance of the expected date of delivery, and in any case starting from the 34th week of pregnancy.


What is needed?

To practice the perineal massage just have a few things available. Use natural oil (olive or wheat sprout oil) or a special perineal massage oil (such as Weleda's). Contains a blend of St. John's wort and wheat sprout oil, along with essential oils of sage moscatella and rose.


Read also: The pelvic floor

How the massage is done

How is perineal massage done? Rest one leg on the edge of the tub or on the chair. First insert an oiled finger (or thumb) into the vagina and then two or three, and massage into a U and apply light pressure for 5-10 minutes in the direction of the intestine. Once a day is enough.

How to train the perineum

With this easy exercise you can also train the perineum: lie with your back on the sofa or on the bed, stand with your legs apart, knees bent and with the soles of your feet supported, tighten the muscles as if you had to hold your pee and then release. Perform several times a day.

Remember that even when you train your perineum regularly there is no guarantee that it will withstand the pressure during delivery.

Exercises for the perineum

In addition to the perineum massage, many midwives recommend doing exercises, called Kegel exercises, which serve to strengthen the pelvic floor.

Aurelia Albano, midwife referent of the Mammamondo association of our city, explains that:

The perineum is a hammock on which all the muscles of our belly find support

The expert clarifies that it is not said that after childbirth one must necessarily go to meet incontinence or to a prolapse: with a good job of prevention and doing a series of exercises aimed at strengthening this band of muscles, incontinence under stress can be avoided. In addition, doing perineum exercises can also positively affect everyday posture and make the pelvic floor more elastic in preparation for childbirth.

Perineal massage by the partner

Il partner it could be of help in the massage: the important thing is that he follows the same instructions for practicing the massage by asking him to use the index fingers instead of the thumbs.

References

  • NCT - Perineal massage in pregnancy
  • Healthline

TAG:
  • penineal massage
  • perineum
  • give birth
  • laceration
  • episiotomy
  • weeks 29 40
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