Float therapy during pregnancy

Reuben Riddell
July 26, 2023
5 min read

If you're going to be a mom soon, you probably have a lot of questions about what you should and shouldn't do for a healthy pregnancy. Float therapy, also known as REST, might be a good option for you. This article explains how safe float therapy is during pregnancy. It also discusses the benefits and potential risks. It also gives you important things to consider before choosing float therapy and steps to prepare for each session. We've also included a section with answers to common questions. Our goal is to give you the information you need to make informed decisions and have a comfortable and stress-free pregnancy.

Is Float Therapy Safe During Pregnancy?

Many pregnant women wonder if it is safe to do float therapy. In general, float therapy is safe during pregnancy. It can help you relax and relieve physical discomfort. When you float in water with Epsom salt, your body effortlessly floats. This takes pressure off your joints and muscles.But, like with any therapy, there are things to consider. Some health conditions or high-risk pregnancies may require caution. To make sure it's safe for you, talk to your healthcare provider before doing float therapy. They will give you advice tailored to your specific situation. This will keep you safe and help you get the most benefit from the treatment.

What Are the Benefits of Float Therapy for Pregnant Women?

Pregnancy brings many changes to a woman's body. Float therapy can help with these changes. First, it can reduce physical discomfort. The water's buoyancy relieves the extra weight and reduces stress on joints and muscles, which can help with back pain and leg cramps.Float therapy can also improve sleep. The relaxation during sessions can lead to better sleep, which is very important for pregnant women who have trouble sleeping.In addition, float therapy can bring relaxation and peace. Resting in a calm environment while floating can lower stress levels. This is especially helpful during the later stages of pregnancy, when anxiety and anticipation are common.Some women have even reported a special connection with their baby during float therapy. They feel like they are floating together, just like the baby inside the womb. Float therapy can create a strong bond between mother and baby.

What Are the Risks of Float Therapy During Pregnancy?

Float therapy has many mental and physical benefits. But pregnant women should also know about some risks. Sometimes, expectant mothers may feel dizzy or nauseated because of the high concentration of Epsom salts in the water. This can cause dehydration if not handled correctly. It's also important to note that lying on your back for a long time, like during float therapy, may be uncomfortable, especially later in pregnancy. The small space of the float tank might make some people feel claustrophobic. And if the water in the tank isn't well-maintained, there's a risk of infection. So, it's important to make sure the spa or wellness center you go to follows strict hygiene and maintenance rules.

What Should You Consider Before Trying Float Therapy?

Embarking on a float therapy journey during pregnancy can certainly offer an array of benefits. However, there are crucial factors you need to keep in mind before taking the plunge. You should consult with your healthcare provider or midwife first. They have comprehensive knowledge of your health history and can provide personalized advice based on your condition. 

Also, timing is key when considering float therapy during pregnancy. While floating can be quite beneficial, it's often more suited to the second and third trimesters. Typically, the first trimester is a tumultuous time hormonally, and float therapy might not be recommended. 

Furthermore, be sure to research and choose a reputable float centre. The cleanliness and hygiene standards of the centre are of utmost importance, particularly when you're pregnant. A good sign of a reputable centre is one that is transparent about its cleanliness practices. 

Lastly, listen to your body. While many pregnant women find float therapy to be a serene and helpful experience, every pregnancy is unique. What works overwhelmingly well for one individual might not be as effective or comfortable for another. Always prioritise your comfort and well-being.

How to Prepare for Your Float Therapy

To prepare for your float therapy, follow these steps. First, make sure you drink enough water before your session, but don't eat a heavy meal. This will help your body adjust to the buoyancy and prevent nausea. Before you start floating, go to the restroom to avoid discomfort. It's best to come without makeup or remove it before you begin. Don't use creams or oils on your skin, as they might react with the Epsom salts in the float tank and affect your experience or the experience of others.If it's your first time floating, arrive a few minutes early to get familiar with the environment and ask any remaining questions. This will help you feel more comfortable and get the most out of your float therapy.Lastly, consider your comfort and any potential irritants. Skip shaving or waxing on the day of your float therapy to avoid a stinging sensation from the salt water. Also, if you have fresh cuts or wounds, make sure they are properly covered using a waterproof bandage provided at most float centres. Now, you're set to enjoy the therapeutic benefits of float therapy.

Frequently Asked Questions About Float Therapy for Pregnancy

  • Q: What exactly is float therapy? A: Float therapy, also known as sensory deprivation, involves lying in a saltwater solution in a sensory deprivation tank. It allows you to experience complete relaxation by creating an environment free from all external stimulation.
  • Q: How soon into my pregnancy can I start float therapy? A: Generally, it is safe to begin float therapy anytime during your pregnancy. However, you should always consult your healthcare provider before starting any new therapies during pregnancy.
  • Q: Can float therapy cause any harm to my baby? A: Float therapy is considered safe during pregnancy. The Epsom salts used in the therapy are beneficial for the mother and do not pose any harm to the baby. However, it's best to always speak with your healthcare provider before starting any new treatments.
  • Q: How often should I do float therapy? A: The frequency of float therapy sessions varies depending on your personal preference and tolerance. Some pregnant women may find it beneficial to float once a week, while others may want to float more frequently.
  • Q: Are there any side effects of float therapy during pregnancy? A: Side effects are minimal and mainly linked to detoxification after float therapy sessions. These can include feelings of nausea or lethargy, but these are usually temporary and subside shortly after the session.
  • Q: Do I need special preparations for float therapy? A: No, you do not typically require any special preparations for float therapy. It may be a good idea to avoid caffeinated beverages before your session to help achieve a state of deep relaxation more easily.
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