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  • "kizzy" started this thread

Posts: 366

Reg: Nov 14th 2005

Location: berkshire

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Monday, April 10th 2006, 3:04pm


i have read that it recommended to 'oil' the perineum with almond or even olive oil ....

has anyone started doing this ?

  • "moomin05" is no longer a member of FZ

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Reg: Oct 3rd 2005

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Monday, April 10th 2006, 3:09pm

No, haven't even heard of doing that before!

  • "kizzy" started this thread

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Reg: Nov 14th 2005

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Monday, April 10th 2006, 3:11pm

.... helps it at supple & stretch at the time of 'impact' ..... i am sure i read it somewhere !!!!



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Reg: Oct 11th 2005

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Monday, April 10th 2006, 3:15pm

sorry for crashing your thread. I've just started doing it and am 33 weeks. My midwife rec doing it from 32 weeks onwards. I'm using olive oil. well actually my DH is using olive oil cos I currently can't reach the designated area!!! Sorry if thats TMI.

anyway sorry for this really long message but I've posted in below some info I got from an NCT trainer. I hope its helpful to you.

Prenatal Perineal Massage

If you are interested in avoiding an episiotomy, you may find that massaging your perineum can help you stretch for the birth of your baby. In late pregnancy, there is an increase in hormones that loosen connective tissue in preparation for the birth. Perineal massage further increases this elasticity. This massage also helps you learn to relax the pelvic floor muscles while they are being stretched - and this takes practice!

Perineal massage helps prepare you for the feelings of pressure and stretching that come as your baby's head is born. Knowing what some of the sensations will be like can help you to relax and give birth instead of tensing up and fighting the sensations such as stinging, tingling or burning that you may feel as your baby's head is born. Perineal massage can also encourage you to relax when you have a vaginal examination

You can begin any time during the last 6 - 8 weeks before your due date, as this coincides with the rise in hormone levels. Be sure to discuss this with your caregiver especially if you have genital herpes or vaginitis, as massage can worsen these conditions.

General Hints
v The first few times it is helpful to use a mirror to find the vagina and perineum and see what they look like.

v If you feel tense, take a warm bath or use a warm compress on your perineum for 5-10 minutes.

v If you have had an episiotomy with a previous birth, concentrate part of your massage on that area. Scar tissue is not as stretchy as the rest of your skin and needs extra attention.

v The position in which you give birth can affect the likelihood of perineal tearing and the need for an episiotomy. Upright positions (sitting, squatting, kneeling) or side-lying positions reduce the strain on the perineum. Lying on your back with your legs in stirrups makes an episiotomy almost inevitable.

v After childbirth, tone up the stretched vaginal muscles by doing pelvic floor muscle exercises as soon as possible (the birth day!) after your baby has been born.


Begin by emptying your bladder and getting into a comfortable position. You can lie down, propped with pillows into a half-sitting position; you can squat with your back against a wall, or sit on the toilet. A warm bath can help soften your tissues and relax you, or try hot compresses on your perineum.

First massage a good, natural oil into the area, such as wheat germ oil, almond oil, vitamin E oil, or any non-mineral oil. Massage and lubricate the skin and inner inch or so of the vaginal opening, and the lower vaginal walls. Pay special attention to any scar tissue from previous episiotomies or tears. Make sure hands are clean, nails are trim, and if your hands are rough, use disposable latex gloves (the thin surgical type).

Doing the massage yourself?

1. Wash your hands.

2. Choose a private place and sit or lean back in a comfortable position.

3. Put a lubricant such as KY Jelly, Almond Oil, Vitamin E Oil or pure vegetable oil on your thumbs and around your perineum.

4. Place your thumbs about 3-4cms inside your vagina. Press downwards and to the sides at the same time. Gently and firmly keep stretching until you feel a slight burning, tingling or stinging sensation.

5. Hold the pressure steady at that point with your thumbs for about 2 minutes until the area feels a little numb and the tingling sensation is not as apparent.

6. Keep pressing with your thumbs. Slowly and gently massage back and forth over the lower half of your vagina, working the lubricant into the tissues. Keep this up for 3-4minutes. Avoid the urinary opening.

7. As you massage, pull gently outwards (forwards) on the lower part of the vagina with your thumbs hooked inside. This helps stretch the skin as the baby'' head will stretch it during birth.

8. Do this once a day, starting around the 34th week of pregnancy. After about a week you should notice an increase in flexibility and stretchiness.


Your partner doing the massage

Make sure you are nice and relaxed - maybe do some back and thigh massage to get you ready. With well-oiled index fingers, begin by placing them in the vagina up to about the first joint. Press down until the woman is slightly uncomfortable, then stretch out and up into the 'U' shaped motion. By slightly uncomfortable I mean that your partner should stretch you until you feel a tingling or burning sensation. This is the same sensation that you will feel when the baby's head begins to crown, which tells you 'Relax, open up, let go, stop pushing'.
Continue to massage for about 5 minutes.

As you massage each day, you will find that the tissues will noticeably soften and loosen. You will be able to insert two fingers to massage, and insert them to the second joint. You will notice the perineum stretching much wider, with less pain. This helps you to feel confident that a baby's head can surely pass through, that you can allow this to happen.

With fingers inside, do a pelvic floor exercise. Feel where the muscles are and how strong they are. The more pelvic floor exercises you do, the stronger and more tone they will have. Feel how uncomfortable the stretching of your perineum is when you tense this muscle. Try to consciously release this muscle as you massage. Remember the connection between your mouth, jaw and your bottom - if they are loose then your bottom will be too. Always end a massage session with a few pelvic floor exercises to keep the muscles well toned. Doing them after the birth helps to rehabilitate these muscles.

This post has been edited 2 times, last edit by "Rivka" (Apr 11th 2006, 8:25am)

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Reg: Feb 13th 2006

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Monday, April 10th 2006, 4:19pm

Hi Girls

My friend did it and started it tearing and no episiotomy required....there again life does generally deal her a good hand!!


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Monday, April 10th 2006, 6:38pm


I put a thread on the 3rd trimester too as I had just read about it. There is further info there for you hun, from what I have read you should start at approx 31-32 weeks.

Becs info is useful though, I just got to get DH into it.

  • "kizzy" started this thread

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Reg: Nov 14th 2005

Location: berkshire

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Tuesday, April 11th 2006, 10:43am

i think i might get the dp to start tonight ! ;)

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Tuesday, April 11th 2006, 11:22am

I managed to get DH to agree to it. May start this weekend.