We all know that starting a family is both a thrilling and challenging venture for all parents. This time of change and expectancy can become even more challenging for families undergoing fertility treatments. The variety of stressors involved in the mental, emotional and physical levels for hopeful parents can be vast.
Finding simple ways in which self-care can be of support during fertility treatments is of vital importance. I am a believer in teaching and implementing great self-care rituals. My life’s work is dedicated to helping individuals reduce and heal the stresses of life.
Caring for oneself
In order for a parent to become the best version of themselves for their child and each other, the idea of self-care must be focused on. To take excellent care of others, we must know how to take care of our own well-being first and foremost. If our own reserves are depleted, we have little to give others. These are important lessons that parents must understand on a deep level. This will help them teach their children how to set up daily practices to help them live happy and balanced lives.
Whether one or both individuals are going through fertility treatments, we can be certain that both future parents are facing emotional ups and downs. There will be days with high levels of hope and others where the future looks uncertain. The body and the mind take their cues from each other, and if one is at ease, the other will surely follow. We must tend to the physical needs of the parents in order to help soothe their emotional and mental needs, and to help them create a welcoming environment for birth.
Turning to Massage
The good news is that there are all kinds of help that parents have at their disposal through the process. Massage is a wonderful self-help tool to employ while going through fertility treatments. Studies show a direct correlation between massage and fertility.
Three Types of Massage for Self-Care During Fertility Treatments
Below, I share are my three favourite massages for use as simple self-care strategies to help during fertility treatment. I have personally witnessed the healing power of touch through pregnancy massage, healing massage, and foot reflexology massage, time and time again.
These types of massage can be used to nurture the body as it goes through the process of fertility treatments, during and after birth. The healing modalities of massage will likely remain with the parents long after the children are all grown up.
1. Pregnancy Massage
The benefits of prenatal and postnatal massage are vital to the well-being of both the mother and the child. Stress has been linked to premature births and low birth weight, and it may also impact the cognitive functions of the child. We can’t keep stress entirely away, but we can help the mother’s body learn to release any tension and stress as it goes through the process of fertility treatments, the pregnancy itself, and after birth.
2. Healing Massage
This refers to any form of massage wherein the masseuse administers a healing touch to the patient. It provides a wonderful experience for both future parents to help reduce tension and anxiety, increase flexibility and mobility, increase lymphatic flow, increase circulation, stimulate the body’s immune system, and help promote a feeling of deep relaxation. Having the parents set up times to get massages together also helps strengthen their emotional bonds and aids learning to create time to relax together.
3. Foot Reflexology Massage
Our feet are seen as maps of our entire bodies. Foot reflexology massages can work wonders by focusing on the feet as a means to address the needs of the entire body. The benefits of reflexology add to the patient’s overall energy levels, help eliminate toxins from the body, stimulate the nervous system and nerve functions, create and maintain a relaxed homeostasis within the body, and will help in healing the body after birth.
We are not immune to the challenges that come our way in life, but we are all given the tools which can help us cope. Fertility treatments may, on the surface, seem like they will only impact the physical body, but they have a positive effect on the mental and emotional state of the patients and that of the future children. Different types of massage can be employed to help during the treatment, pregnancy and after birth, to help ensure the longevity of a healthy and happy family. Our children will grow up to emulate and value within themselves the self-care we show ourselves.