Perineal massage

Massage of the perineum - procedure and instructions for when to start. This oil has good reviews

Childbirth is a really scary factor for many women, which puts an end to the long months of pregnancy. Many complications can occur during childbirth, which leave behind physical consequences in the form of several weeks of healing scars. We mean both caesarean section and tearing or cutting of the perineal area of the female body. Damage to the perineum during natural birth or having it cut by a doctor can be avoided in various ways. Among them is the so-called dam massage. However, no dam preparation method for childbirth provides a hundred percent guarantee that the woman will avoid this intervention during childbirth.

Published: 07.11.2023
Updated: 06.12.2023

In what cases should you massage the perineum during pregnancy, in which week to start it, how long to perform this activity, but also what massage preparations are most suitable, we will discuss in the following paragraphs of our article.

When to start massaging the perineum?

Massage of the perineum, i.e. the area of the female body located between the vaginal opening and the anus, should be performed at regular intervals eight to six weeks before the fixed delivery date. The goal of this procedure is to provide sufficient blood flow and increase the elasticity of the parts of the female body that will be exposed to the greatest pressure during childbirth.

This means that in their case there may be some spontaneous damage or the necessity of cutting by the obstetrician himself. Massage of the perineum also prepares the expectant mother for the feelings of burning pain that women experience due to the pressure of the coming baby's head on the perineal area, and thus also for overcoming them. He will gradually learn not only how to manage such burning, but also how to achieve easy relaxation of tense muscles.

However, it must be remembered that even thorough preparation in the form of perineal massage does not necessarily mean that you will avoid a cut. You should perform it as a precaution, if only for the reason that in a certain way this action can have a positive effect not only on your mental state, but also on your intimate relationship with your partner. That is, of course, provided that massaging the perineum helps you.

Dam massage instructions

Dam massage technique and suitable oil

The instructions for perineal massage are completely simple and intuitive. First of all, the most important thing is that you observe basic hygiene, regardless of whether you will perform the massage alone or with the help of a partner. Since these are delicate tissues inside the genital system, it is recommended to cut the nails of at least those fingers that you intend to use while massaging the perineum.

Massage the perineum after emptying the bladder, while this action is best performed after a bath, during which the body is completely relaxed. In order for the massaging to take place in sufficient comfort, it is necessary not only to take a comfortable position in the form of a sitting or semi-lying position with slightly spread legs and feet placed firmly on the ground, but also to use the correct preparation.

Coconut oil is suitable for massaging the perineum, while perineal massage oils from the brands Saloos or Weleda can also be used. Baby or mineral oils, as well as lubricating gel and petroleum jelly, are not recommended for massaging the perineum. As for the position mentioned above, it is advisable to use a mirror during the first independent massages, so that you can check whether you are performing the action in the right way.

After applying a few drops of the respective oil to your thumb and index finger, you should primarily apply a layer of oil to the perineum so that your fingers gently glide over it. Subsequently, it is necessary to insert the oiled thumb into the vagina, where at a depth of approximately three to four centimeters you grasp the perineum with both fingers, while the thumb remains inside, while the index finger passes over the perineum from the outside.

The grasped tissue should then be massaged with circular movements with fingers standing opposite each other and, under the influence of gentle pressure with the thumb, stretch it outwards, while subsequently moving the thumb from side to side along the lower wall of the vaginal opening in the shape of an arch (in the shape of the letter "U"), as if you were they wanted to enlarge it, which is basically the goal of the whole operation.

Massage of the perineum should not be extremely painful, but since this part of the female body is a very sensitive area and initially has a stiff and inflexible nature, during the massage there may be mild pain in the form of burning or itching, which means that the perineum is gradually stretched. It is better to temporarily reduce the amount of pressure you use to massage the perineum. If you really feel burning pain, try to relax the muscles around the perineum. This procedure will not only help you overcome the current pain, but also prepare you for childbirth, during which the correct muscle relaxation technique during contractions is a very important aspect.

The more often you do this procedure, the more elastic your perineum will be. It is important that you introduce this perineum massage procedure into your weekly plans at least three times and devote five to ten minutes of your time to it. There is no need to get extreme hopes, because there are still no studies that would 100 percent confirm the elimination of the incision of the perineum as a result of performing a massage of this intimate area of the body before childbirth.

Exercising the perineum before childbirth is not suitable for everyone

Despite the fact that most mothers can only benefit from exercising the perineum, and especially massaging this area of the female body, there are cases when you should think twice about applying this action.

If you belong to women with a high-risk pregnancy or a tendency to premature contractions, it is better to skip the perineal massage. However, if you are not sure about something, it is advisable to ask your gynecologist, who will certainly offer you the answers you are looking for.

Massage of the perineum after childbirth

If you didn't have time to use special oils for massaging the perineum before giving birth, don't despair, because you will be able to use them effectively even after giving birth. The ingredients of plant origin contained in these oils have beneficial effects in the area of skin care, for which your probably dried postpartum skin will thank you.

The oils also relax the muscles and help fight feelings of fatigue, anxiety or depression, which are a common part of the postpartum period. In connection with the massage of the perineum, it is necessary to mention the soothing gels for the perineum created on a cooling basis. Such a gel assists in the faster healing of stretched tissues of the perineum.

Massage perineum procedure

Dam massage - experience

On the Modrý konik discussion portal there are several forums discussing various aspects of this prenatal preparation. For example, in connection with the oils used, we read that it is appropriate to use olive oil, but also edible or apricot oil for massaging the perineum. There was also a discussion on the topic of preferences regarding perineum and aniball massage. While some women preferred a natural form of perineal massage with their own or their partner's help, the vast majority praised and glorified aniball, which they say ensured a birth without an incision and a comfortable recovery after childbirth. In any case, it should be noted that each woman's body is individual and each woman has her own level of tolerability of the mentioned actions. While for some aniball is a salvation, for others such a method of perineal exercise before childbirth can be literally suffering. It is up to you and your body, which method of prenatal preparation you choose.

The most frequent questions - FAQ

Did you not find in the article all the information related to perineal massage before childbirth that you were looking for? Were you not satisfied with the additional points of interest mentioned in the question and answer section? Our comments section is open for your questions regarding any aspect of this topic.

No, perineal massage is not recommended during an infectious disease of the genital organs. You should avoid massaging the area until it is completely healed. From the point of view of prevention, thorough hygiene is the most important thing in connection with perineal massage, regardless of whether you perform this action alone or with the help of a partner.

The main goal of the perineal massage is to work on the flexibility of the perineal area, but secondarily you should also focus on massaging the entire vaginal opening and its surroundings, because these delicate tissues will be exposed to some pressure and strain during childbirth.

The principle of both of these procedures is the same, so the decision is up to the mother-to-be. From the point of view of pain and discomfort from the given action, the preferred perineum exercise before childbirth is perineum massage using your own or your partner's fingers and an oil preparation. Aniball also has a very effective function in exercising the perineal area before childbirth, but not every pregnant woman needs to have a pleasant experience using a foreign object. However, some women recommend a combination of these two methods. If you do not suffer from a high-risk pregnancy, it is advisable to try both methods first, and based on your own findings, you can then decide on the next procedure.

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