During pregnancy, many mothers avoid massage for fear of damaging the fetus. But in reality, massage for pregnant women can be done as long as the pregnancy is not problematic. One of the important massages performed before childbirth is the perineum massage.
Perineal massage aims to stimulate the perineum (thin skin between the anus and the vagina) to avoid perineal tears during labor.
Perineal massage is one of the tips for giving birth without stitches. In other words, in addition to preparing the delivery plan until the bag is brought to the hospital, the perineal massage must also be prepared.
What is the importance of perineal massage?
Perineal massage can be performed from gestational age from the third trimester to the moment before childbirth. Massage of the perineum can soften the thin skin between the anus and the vagina. This part includes the most stretching during work.
Not only does it avoid tearing the birth canal, but perineal massage also accelerates the recovery process after childbirth. At least in the event of a perineal rupture, it is only at level 1 that skin tears can heal quickly.
If you do not yet know the term perineum, it is the area of tissue between the vagina and anus. In the perineum, the muscles that play an important role in the reproductive organs, including the pelvic floor, are attached.
How to massage the perineum
Like vaginal massage, perineal massage can only be done at home. To do this, use one or two fingers on the perineum so that the tissue is more ready to stretch during labor.
In addition, the perineum is an area that stretches to make room for the baby’s head and body for normal delivery. The fingers that penetrate the perineum are then gently massaged in different directions so that this area can be stretched as much as possible during labor.
During the massage, stay occasionally in a certain position to train by stretching the muscles of the perineum. If you are used to doing a perineal massage, the discomfort when the muscles are stretched for a long time will not bother you.
Not only is it beneficial for the perineal tissue, but perineal massage also helps pregnant women to practice breathing when the perineum is stretched. The sensation felt when the perineum is stretched is a burning sensation.
The more a woman knows this feeling, the more she will not be surprised by what she feels during labor. In other words, it can make pregnant women safer and more secure.
Some things to consider before doing a perineum massage:
- Make sure your fingers and hands are perfectly clean.
- Cut the nails that are still long.
- Position the body comfortably to reach the perineum (can be from the front or the back)
- Explore different positions to find the most comfortable
- The fingers penetrate 2 to 3 cm into the vagina
- For the initial perineal massage, use a mirror to know if you are in the right position
Perineal massage can be done once or twice a week when you are 34 weeks pregnant. It doesn’t take more than 5 minutes to do this. If you can’t do it yourself, ask your partner for help.
Benefits of Perineal Massage
The reason for the perineal massage is important because this tissue is very rigid and difficult to stretch. As a result, there is a risk of trauma or tears during childbirth.
Naturally, when the massage of the perineum is strange or even painful when it is performed for the first time. But the more you train, the simpler and more practical the application.
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Some of the benefits of perineal massage include:
- Prevents rupture in the birth canal or perineal rupture
- Practice breathing when the perineal muscles stretch and cause pain.
- Accelerates the postpartum recovery process
- Makes the genital tract more flexible when delivery is normal
- Train your mind and body to relax while your perineal muscles stretch
Perineal massage is an effective method that must be performed before childbirth. This does not mean that pregnant women who are diligent in perineal massage will certainly not experience a rupture in the birth canal, but they can at least reduce the feeling of discomfort during labor.