Why should you make time for postpartum massage therapy? You may be tired, entirely focused on caring for your new baby, and you may not feel like even showering in the first few weeks after giving birth. But it’s worth the effort!
Benefits For You: Massage is well-known for its benefits for stress and anxiety relief, but did you know that massage can help treat postpartum depression? Massage can also ease fatigue, and alleviate residual body aches in your abdomen, hips, shoulders, and legs, and can even help you heal after a C-section.
You may also find reduced swelling and better sleep, as well as improved breastfeeding and hormone regulation. It is an ideal, holistic way to cope with the major adjustment you are making when you enter the realm of motherhood.
New moms often experience shoulder, neck, and wrist pain from caring for and feeding their newborn. Massage can definitely help with that! And since I have experience working as a postpartum doula, I can show you ways hold and carry your baby to prevent pain from reoccurring.
Benefits For Your Baby: If you have chosen to breastfeed your baby, you know it can be a great gift, and a major stressor, all at once. However, relaxation in the shoulders through massage can improve your circulation and milk production. Some studies have also shown massage boosts levels of prolactin, a lactation hormone.
Additionally, your baby has a mother who is happier, calmer, and less stressed. And what could be a better gift for the two of you than the gift of serenity?
You can get a massage after birth as soon as you are comfortable doing so. You may find that you have to adjust your positioning to find the right position for you. Laying on your stomach may not be comfortable if you are nursing, but laying on your side may be a great way to focus on healing discomfort in your hips, legs, and shoulders.
As I review my policies and practices in preparation to return to work, I thought I'd share a few updates with you. This post will cover my Covid-19 Specific Policies, what I bring to your appointment, and what I need you to do to prepare your space for a massage session. As always, please let me know if you have any questions!
COVID-19 Specific Policies:
What I Bring:
What I Don’t Bring:
I look forward to seeing you soon!
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer temporarily banned all massage therapy as of March, 2020. She has recently rescinded that Executive Order, and as of June 15, 2020, all licensed massage therapists will be able to practice again in Michigan. I am currently working on updating my policies to keep myself and my clients safe, and ordering the products that will be necessary to do so. I will be reaching out to clients next week to schedule appointments!
Kristen Woudstra, LMT now accepts FSAs and HSAs!
What are FSAs (Flexible Spending Account) & HSAs (Health Savings Account)?
FSAs and HSAs allow you to set up a tax-deductible account to pay for medical expenses that are not covered by your health insurance. FSA and HSA funds can be used to pay for virtually any type of medical service, as long as it pertains to the treatment or prevention of a specific health condition.
Is Massage Therapy Eligible?
Massage therapy qualifies as a medical expense if you have a written prescription/letter of medical necessity from your health care provider. The IRS states that medical care expenses must be primarily to alleviate or prevent a physical or mental ailment. Some examples that qualify include carpal tunnel syndrome, stress, back pain, arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, anxiety, depression, and pain management.
What do I need to do?
You can visit your health care provider and let them know that you need a prescription/letter of medical necessity in order to use your FSA or HSA funds toward treatment or prevention of your condition. A healthcare provider must provide the following 3 pieces of information on the prescription/letter of medical necessity:
1. Medical necessity: what medical condition is being treated (example: chronic back pain)
2. Frequency: how often treatment is expected (example: weekly)
3. Duration: the length of treatment (example: 12 months)
Have a copy of the prescription/letter of medical necessity for your appointment, and also make sure you keep a copy for your records. Bring your FlexCard or HSA Debit Card to pay for your next visit. If you don’t have a card, you can pay for your massage and turn in your receipt for reimbursement. Please contact your FSA/HSA provider if you have any other questions.
Note: You can not include tips or pay for massage packages/gift certificates with your FSA/HSA funds.
Contact me if you have any questions!
Hey, you're human. And if you're like the rest of us, sometimes your plans change. Ideally, I would prefer to have 48 hours notice if you need to cancel or change your appointment. The following policies apply to all clients, even the human ones:
Many of my clients will ask me, "Should I cancel my massage if I'm sick?" My answer is "Yes, please!" Massage is great for lots of things, but it’s not great for a body fighting a virus or infection. Getting a massage when you’re sick takes your body’s attention away from infection fighting. It might sound strange, but many people find that they end up feeling worse after receiving a massage when they have a cold or the flu.
Please cancel your appointment if:
Massage during pregnancy not only makes a woman feel more comfortable, but offers undeniable health benefits as well. In all trimesters, regular prenatal massage can:
• Encourage relaxation.
• Reduce physical and emotional stress.
• Decrease depression and anxiety.
• Alleviate muscle and joint pain, particularly SI joint pain, pubic symphasis
dysfunction, sciatica, low back, and shoulder pain.
• Improve breathing, digestion, and sleep.
• Prepare pelvic muscles for birth process.
As a Pre- and Perinatal Massage Specialist, I spend my days helping women feel confident, comfortable and relaxed throughout pregnancy and the transition into motherhood. I use techniques that are designed specifically to address pregnancy's challenges. Massage, even deep tissue massage, is safe in all trimesters, but special considerations must be taken into account to keep mom and baby safe.
If you are a mom-to-be experiencing physical discomfort or just nervous about the birth process, I can help! Call for more information or to book an appointment.