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January 21st, 2013, 06:42 PM
Join Date: Jul 2012
Here's a good handout if you want more detailed information:
I personally haven't done perineal massage, but I have done the Internal Work detailed in the Pink Kit, which goes deeper (literally and figuratively) than perineal massage. I had three babies naturally before doing that, and never tore with them, but felt much more control over my pushing stage and working my babies out with the two that I did do it with. I've done it again preparing for baby #6.
I don't think perineal massage is a must-do, but I think some of the benefits are the increased awareness of the tissues of your pelvis. It gives you a chance to focus on that area, feel tension and relaxation in that area, and develop control. It also helps you become familiar with your tissues so you can, if you want, feel your baby's head descending, etc. I treasure my last two births where I reached in an felt myself that I was complete and felt those little curved heads moving through my tissues
Also, IMO, perineal massage (or Internal Work from the PKP) done respectfully and with awareness does *not* cause tissues to become more tense than they were before. There's a lot of change in just a short amount of time and you can feel it. It's encouraging to feel the change from the massage and also to feel just how much room your beautiful body has to open up
Just my 2 cents!
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