Priming for labour uses specific reflexology techniques to strongly stimulate certain reflexes with the intention of creating a boost of energy to help the onset of labour contractions. This is a gentler choice than being medically induced, where studies have shown that artificial induction can increase the chance of further intervention, such as a c-section.
How does it help?
The hour long session involves lots of relaxation techniques to help release any stress or worries you may have about the impending birth. Hormones are balanced to prepare the body for it's vital role in the onset of labour. Along with other vital reflex points, the pituitary reflex is strongly stimulated to encourage the release of the hormone oxytocin. This hormone is responsible for kick starting labour and as the oxytocin levels rise, they cause the uterus and abdominal muscles to contract regularly.
Traditional Chinese Medicine acupressure points are also stimulated to encourage strong energy flows to the baby and produces a downward movement of Qi (energy).
Although the reflexes and pressure points are worked strongly, it is still a very relaxing treatment and a time for you to connect with your baby. Most of my clients fall asleep and wake up feeling like they've had a good nights sleep. As with maternity reflexology, you will be sitting on a couch and supported by lots of pillows so you're able to fully relax and let go.
There is no guarantee that priming for labour techniques will get things moving, however, I've had some good results with using these methods and many clients notice changes once the treatment has finished and they return home.
For best results, I recommend having weekly treatments during the third trimester followed by 1 - 3 sessions from your due date to Prime for Labour.