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Massage Today
October, 2009, Vol. 9, Issue 10

Light-Touch Therapy Eases Pregnancy and Delivery of Twins

By Ken Piercy, MTI, CST-D; guest author for John Upledger, DO, OMM

Twins! The doctor said TWINS! You might think a mother-to-be would be delighted to hear that news. But Carly's first pregnancy had been difficult. Would carrying two be twice as hard? Or worse? If someone had told Carly, a Texas mom, she'd deliver two healthy babies with none of the problems she had with her first pregnancy, she wouldn't have believed them.

But then she began receiving CranioSacral Therapy (CST) and Lymph Drainage Therapy (LDT) and everything changed for her and her newborns.

In the first pregnancy, Carly lost 15 pounds in her first trimester. She was stunned by her extreme food aversions, cravings and heightened sense of smell. An uncomfortable, hypersensitive gag reflex was triggered whenever her toothbrush even came close to her mouth.

The second trimester hadn't been much better. Carly had expected mild morning sickness, but the nonstop heartburn had been hard to accept. A diagnosis of mild hemorrhoids left her thinking, "Sure, they're mild if they're not yours." She watched sadly as her legs swelled, leaving no noticeable difference between her knees and her ankles.

The third trimester brought on severely elevated blood pressure and problems with her gall bladder, requiring four trips to the emergency room. Bed rest was recommended until her high blood pressure finally warranted an emergency C-section. Fortunately, those challenges had produced Conner. Other than chronic ear infections, he was a joy.

Then Carly's postpartum mood swings became so severe that she "hit the wall" before she even left the hospital. Whenever anyone even asked her how she was doing, she would break down in tears. "I felt like a failure," she said. "I felt defensive and worried that everyone was taking over because I was so bad at being a mom."

Two weeks after the C-section, Carly's gall bladder was removed due to gallstones. The doctor prescribed medication for depression and she remained on it for nearly a year. To top it off, Conner had chronic ear infections by the time he was six months old. That's when a friend recommended my services. CranioSacral Therapy releases tissue restrictions so the central nervous system can return to optimal performance and the other body systems can self-correct. Lymph Drainage Therapy helps move healthy fluids through the body to deliver nutrients and flush out toxins. Both therapies complement each other to strengthen the body's self-healing mechanism.

Light-Touch Therapies Started Early the Second Time Around

I found Conner's neck to be tight and his immune system sluggish. With only a few 30-minute sessions, his symptoms were gone and he was sleeping soundly through the night. That's when Carly realized these therapies might help her, too. So in the first trimester of her second pregnancy, she began coming for monthly sessions to keep her soft tissue relaxed and her internal fluids flowing well. With less tension in her body, Carly had no food issues, no elevated sense of smell and no gag reflex. She did report some minor heartburn, but nothing close to what she had in the previous pregnancy.

In her second trimester, Carly failed her one-hour glucose tolerance test, and her doctor told her she might have to go on insulin. One session of light-touch therapy seemed to help. The next week, she passed her glucose-tolerance test.

Coming Down the Home Stretch

By her third trimester, Carly was healthy and happy. When her legs began swelling in the eighth month, LDT increased her fluid flow so her ankles could return to their normal size and shape. Keeping her lower back flexible and her pelvis relaxed also made a tremendous difference to mother and babies. The improved fluid flow throughout her body and digestive system, noted by the absence of hemorrhoids, kept the soft tissue relaxed and working well.

However, twins are a heavy load to carry. At 34 weeks, the sonogram showed two healthy babies: one 4 lbs. 10 oz., and the other 4 lbs. 8 oz. Carly opted for weekly CST sessions to help her body adjust to the growing weight.

At 35 weeks, her doctor estimated the twins were 5 lbs., 15 oz. each, and Carly was still doing fine. No swelling, no hemorrhoids, no problems. His usual goal for twins was 35 weeks, but Carly had exceeded his expectations and he felt comfortable scheduling her for delivery at 37 weeks. She was "perfect on paper," he said.

By this time, Carly was having a little difficulty getting around carrying 12 lbs. of babies, but had no real issues to report. At 38 weeks, Carly's twins were delivered by C-section. Max was 6 lbs. 1 oz. and Madeline was 5 lbs. 13 oz.

No Problems Postpartum

Two weeks later, Carly and the twins all came in for sessions. Max was having a bit of trouble with reflux and eating slowly, but after four sessions he was able to feed well. Madeline had no problems and Carly had no postpartum issues.

Relaxing her soft tissues and improving her fluid flow gave Carly good health during gestation and the twins a great start in life. She says light-touch therapy made all the difference. Who would have thought carrying two would be so much easier than carrying one?


Click here for previous articles by John Upledger, DO, OMM.

Ken Piercy, MTI, CST-D is a diplomate-certified CranioSacral therapist with a thriving private practice in Dallas. To learn more visit www.kenpiercy.com.

 

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