85% of women will sustain perineal trauma during a vaginal birth.
This article will teach you about the perineal massage and the benefits to help produce the risk of tearing. Plus, we’ll answer all of your questions about the benefits of perineal massage and how often to do it and when to start doing it.
First of all, what is perineal massage? A perineal massage focuses on the perineum, the area between the vagina opening and the anus. With the aim of stretching the perineum and making it more elastic to reduce the risk of tearing during childbirth.
Why should you try perineal massage? Research shows that during birth, around 9 out of 10 first time mums and 7 of 10 mums having subsequent births will have some form of damage to their perineum, such as tearing. Performing regular perineal massage from week 34 of pregnancies is proven to encourage the skin and muscles around the perineum to stretch more easily during childbirth and reduces the severity of tearing or the need of an episiotomy (a cut made to the perineum to widen the vaginal opening for the baby to be born).
In my own experience, I wish I knew this perineal massage technique when I was in my 20s and pregnant and giving birth. So with me, I had to have an episiotomy. The baby was in stress and I was in labor for many hours, so I had to have that cut. And not only did I have that cut, that cut I guess was not wide enough and so I tore on top of that cut.
It is really really important if you can try to do learn these techniques that you can do to help avoid the tearing and the cutting, to help encourage the skin around your perineum to stretch more easily during child birth.
Also, make sure to use an all natural moisturizer on this area that is chemical free – this is so important. We women take in so many chemicals through our our feminine hygiene, through our makeup, and through our moisturizers. This tissue is absorbing things that you put in down there, and that is why you want to make sure it’s chemical free and it’s not going to affect your hormones or your baby.
Learning how to stretch the perineum through a perineal massage gives you the best chance of a better birth experience and a smoother recovery. Make sure to take a look at my other article on how to do it!