Avenue Clinic

Avenue Clinic

The wonders of reflexology for fertility, pregnancy and beyond…

The following appeared on the website www.netmums.com. Reflexologist, Jacqui Booth discusses the wonders of reflexology for fertility, pregnancy and beyond…

How is reflexology helpful to women trying for a baby?

Reflexology is a natural, non-invasive healing art that uses pressure points on the feet and hands to balance out other parts of the body. It aims to alleviate tensions and promote relaxation and can be beneficial for pregnancy or indeed, couples trying for a baby.

The Association of Reflexologists gathers feedback from their members, and it indicates that over 50% of clients seeking reflexology in connection with conception find themselves pregnant within six months. Of course, this isn’t a hard and fast rule and very difficult to quantify, but many benefits have been reported and my own experience is good. The advantage of a reflexology treatment is that fertility issues won’t be treated in isolation. Instead, the overall health of the whole person is addressed during the treatment, which allows for hormones to be balanced and stress levels to be tackled too. For maximum effect, a reflexologist might recommend that the dad-to-be receive treatment too – after all, there’s two people involved with making a baby!

Does it have any other particular benefits for women?

Yes, there’s very little that can’t be addressed in a reflexology treatment, as the aim is to bring about balance and wellness in the whole person. For this reason, practitioners might find that clients report improvements in areas that they didn’t come to be treated for.

Is reflexology advisable for pregnant women in the first trimester?

Reflexology is wonderful in pregnancy, not least because you get a two for one treatment as your growing baby can be felt and even seen on the foot too. You and your practitioner will decide whether you wish to receive treatments in the first three tentative months of pregnancy. At this stage, most women worry about the risk of miscarriage. Even though the aim of reflexology is simply to bring about balance and harmony in the body, it would be all too easy for a mum to feel that the treatment may have contributed in some way should the pregnancy end during this time.

To avoid doubt, many practitioners invite mums-to-be to get back in touch once the pregnancy is established. However, there are reflexologists who are experienced or who specialise in maternity reflexology who may be willing to treat at this time, so do talk to them. After three months, you can confidently enjoy putting your (perhaps swollen) feet up for a wonderful time of relaxation.

Can you really ‘see pregnancy’ by studying the feet?

The therapist may be able to feel the baby growing – first as a little tadpole, and then you yourself may be able to see a growing bulge on the inner side of your foot, just above the heel, maybe larger on one foot than the other. The feet really do reflect what’s going on in the body, and it’s hard to dispute when you get to the nine month mark!

Mums might start asking at this time if reflexology can bring on the labour for them – but in line with the aims of balancing the body, if it’s not time for the baby to budge then it will stay put! However, having received reflexology will make sure that your body is in the best possible state to deal with the labour.

Does it help post-natally?

Continued treatment after the birth will encourage a speedy recovery from the birth and most importantly, some much needed time out for new mums!

Is reflexology suitable for babies?

Yes, they have comparatively short sessions compared to adults, so a few movements will suffice for a baby and can be combined with rhymes to keep their attention. It’s quite a nice thing to do if you have a hand free whilst feeding and it may calm down any gastric problems associated with feeding. Pressing on the solar plexus point is good for calming hiccups and gentle stroking all over the foot is always a good option for calming tears.

And for toddlers and children?

Between the age of two to five they might be quite difficult to keep in one place, so short and sweet is the key here – though you might find that if one sibling has their feet done, you’ll have the next sat beside them waiting for their turn! Reflexology can be done very informally, but you might find that the kids like the whole gathering of lotions, towels and blankets, and getting comfortable on a chair or foot stool before they begin.

Take your lead from your child – as they get older and more private, you might find that they go without a session for a year or more, but then they might change their minds again. If the option is open, then it’s a gentle and non-intrusive way of maintaining contact through the years.

"Claire has so much knowledge and passion for what she does and it really comes through."

Mrs T​ (for Shane Clarke )

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