top of page

Self Massage for Pregnancy Congestion and Stuffed Sinuses

During pregnancy, your mucous membranes go a little haywire. That, plus increased blood flow to the nasal passages and enlargement of the nasal veins, can leave you feeling clogged and congested.

I highly recommend using warm air to your advantage. Think: steamy showers, a roaring humidifier, etc. Some women benefit from using a neti-pot or saline nasal spray. I also like a warm compress on the face, either as a standalone self-care measure or prior to doing some self massage.

When doing lymphatic massage techniques, one key element to remember is to watch your pressure. LESS IS MORE! The lymphatic system is very superficial, so although using a deeper pressure may feel good, it won't be effective in actually moving the lymph. In massage school, we learn to use no more than 5 grams of pressure for this type of massage; that is about the weight of a nickel. Go gentle.

Be sure to wash your hands before beginning your treatment. Begin by performing small circles and/or taps near your collarbone and sternum. Proceed by doing some light, long, gliding strokes down the sides and front of your neck towards your chest. This will help to reduce swollen lymph nodes near the jaw. Give some extra attention around your ears, continuing with downward strokes in front of and behind your ears. You may need to work these techniques for several minutes, but the result should be a noticeable sensation of the lymph beginning to move.

Next, use the pads of your fingertips to make broad sweeps out from the bridge of your nose toward your ears. Repeat this process for a few minutes, until you notice some improvement in facial/nasal congestion. Then, using your finger tips or thumbs, make more outward sweeping motions from your tear ducts, up, and across your eyebrow bones. The upward pressure will feel fantastic on a sinus headache. This technique simultaneously targets acupressure points for the sinus (located along the brow bones) while manually lifting and moving the lymph away from your sinus cavities. From here, you can add any forehead or scalp massage that feels nice; for a sinus headache, try giving the hair a tug - the stretch on the scalp can feel delicious. Return to any techniques you found particularly helpful or combine some to finish off your self-treatment.

259 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page