February 29, 2012 02:00 PM

Credit: iStock

It’s no secret, moms-to-be go through a lot of highs and lows during pregnancy. And a great way to relieve any excess stress or body aches is to get a massage. But before you race out to your local spa, there are a lot of do’s and don’ts you should consider.

We recently chatted with Corneila Zicu, chief creative officer, and Kimberly Knight, massage therapist, from the famed Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa (mom Bethenny Frankel is a fan!) in New York City to get their top tips on making the most of your pregnancy massage experience.

Check out their advice below:

Book treatments according to your trimester. During your first trimester, you should not have any spa massage or body treatments. But once you enter your second trimester, it’s fine to seek out some much-needed pampering. Just research to find out which spas offer services specifically geared towards moms-to-be. You definitely want to make sure you’ll be treated by someone who knows what they’re doing. At Red Door, our Pregnancy Signature Massage is designed to help relax both mom and baby by gently relieving muscle aches and joint pain.

Don’t be afraid to ask for adjustments. Not only is important to make sure a regular client is comfortable during their massage experience, it’s even more so the case with pregnant clients. So don’t be shy about speaking up if something doesn’t feel right. According to Knight, your therapist can create the perfect position using pillows and spa towels to help support your belly and head so you can breathe more deeply. And since you’ll be on your side for most of the massage, it’s also important that your spine is straight and hips are fully supported.

Avoid treatments involving heat. Any body treatments that use a heated blanket, especially via electricity, is a no no. Just avoid it altogether. If you’re looking for something extra besides a massage, go for a manicure or pedicure, which are great for swollen hands and feet.

Research first before trying anything at home. Don’t feel like splurging on a spa? With a little research, you (and your partner!) can create a pampering experience in your bathroom or bedroom. But before you go DIY, it’s important to understand the right technique and to always be gentle. Check out parenting websites like babycenter.com for safe options. We also suggest a warm bath with salt, lavender oil and baking soda — this helps make feet and legs feel lighter and less swollen. You can also add a liter of milk for extra hydration. A warm aromatherapy neck pillow can work wonders too! Just warm it up in the microwave for about a minute and then throw on your fave tunes as you melt away.

For more information about spa treatments or to find a Red Door spa location in your area, go to reddoorspas.com.

Courtesy Red Door

You May Like