Ayurveda-Inspired Bathing Practices During Pregnancy
Pregnancy is one of the most miraculous yet challenging stages in a woman's life. It ushers in a range of new experiences and sensations- both physical and mental. With all these new changes taking place, there’s no doubt that pregnancy requires special care which goes beyond what we’re normally accustomed to. This includes not only preparing for a baby, but also taking care of your physical and mental health, tracking your eating and sleeping habits, and practicing self-care rituals for a healthy and happy pregnancy.
Apart from physical symptoms, women also experience anxiety and heightened emotions during pregnancy due to the intense hormonal changes they are going through. Prenatal care that encompasses the mother’s physical and mental well-being is one of the most important factors to ensure a healthy mother and baby.
Ayurveda prescribes numerous practices that cater to the well-being of pregnant women. Many of these practices can be easily incorporated into your daily bath routine. Following Ayurvedic bathing rituals specially designed for the prenatal period can be extremely beneficial and relaxing for the physical, mental, and spiritual development of the mother and the baby. By regularly indulging in these rituals, mothers-to-be may notice a marked improvement in their overall health and mood, which can contribute to an easier labor and postpartum experience as well.
The ayurvedic approach to pregnancy care defines bathing as a blissful way of preparing for motherhood, involving rituals that have been passed down over generations. The ayurvedic bathing experience is meant to be as comfortable and enjoyable as possible, allowing the body and mind to relax and heal as it nourishes a new life within itself.
Here are a few simple Ayurveda-inspired bathing practices that you can incorporate into your routine during pregnancy.
Oil massage or abhyanga is an ancient ayurvedic practice that involves massaging the body with warm oil prior to bathing. The abhyanga process is especially beneficial during pregnancy as it deeply relaxes the tired body, promotes blood circulation, and boosts overall health. A relaxing massage with warm, herb-infused, cold-pressed oils soothes and heals the skin, tackling dryness caused by hormonal changes, and also helps to keep it firm and supple which can prevent the occurrence of stretch marks. Abhyanga also helps relieve stress in muscles and joints, calms the nerves, and promotes better sleep.
The UMM Body Oil is the perfect choice for pregnancy abhyanga. This rich and nourishing massage oil contains a blend of potent oils and herbs that deeply penetrate the skin, rejuvenating the body and giving the skin a supple and smooth texture.
Take the required amount of oil in a bowl and gently warm it up using a hot water bath. Now dip your fingers into the oil and slowly apply it all over your body from head to toe in circular motions. Don't rush the process. We highly recommend taking this time to connect with your body and baby, marveling at the miracle that’s growing inside you. Gently massaging your baby bump regularly with warm oils is not only an effective method to prevent stretch marks but also a wonderful way to bond with your little one.
Herbal baths have been prescribed in Ayurvedic texts for centuries as they harness the potent healing powers of the different herbs added to them. These herbs can offer an assortment of benefits for pregnant women. You can make your own herbal bath by adding herbs of your choice to a warm tub of water and allowing it to steep for a few minutes.
You can choose from a wide variety of herbs and petals including basil, lavender, eucalyptus, vetiver, peppermint, rosemary, rose, chamomile, camellia, neem, and brahmi. These herbs greatly enhance the bathing experience by detoxifying the body, healing skin infections, soothing sore muscles, and offering aromatherapy benefits as well. Herbal baths combined with abhyanga help maintain the skin's moisture levels, preventing the dryness that women are commonly afflicted with during pregnancy.
Use a body ubtan or a natural cleanser like The Bar to gently cleanse your skin and wash away any excess oil. If you have dry skin, we recommend applying a few drops of oil or Body Creme to your skin immediately after your shower to lock in moisture and keep your skin hydrated for longer.
Following these bathing rituals regularly can protect your skin against harmful infections, improve your skin tone, relax sore muscles and joints, and boost your immunity levels.
We highly recommend incorporating these bathing practices at least twice a week to reap their benefits. These simple bathing rituals will give you the warmth, comfort, and relaxation that your body deserves during this phase, helping you glow from within like the goddess you are.