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Er.... perineal massage

(63 Posts)
blushes Tue 29-Sep-09 11:23:49

Right, rather personal question, but I hope somebody will be able to help...

I'm almost 23 weeks and am planning to start doing some perineal massage soon.

However, I am very- well- sensitive down there and suffer from recurrent utis which are irritated by cosmetics and fraganced products.

Can anyone recommend a nice, natural type oil which won't irritate my delicate lady parts? Or do I not need to use oil at all?

Thanks in advance!

babyOcho Tue 29-Sep-09 11:29:22

Almond oil from the health food shop.

woowa Tue 29-Sep-09 11:30:22

what on earth is perineal massage???

blushes Tue 29-Sep-09 11:53:55

woowa, your perineum is the bit between your- oh let's just say the bit that can tear during childbirth. Apparently massaging it with oil throughout pregnancy can help prevent this.

Thanks for the tip babyOcho. Didn't fancy standing red-faced in the health food shop asking for advice (not that they would have minded, I'm sure. Non-uptight lentil weaving types tend to embrace that sort of thing!).

Yikess Tue 29-Sep-09 13:27:34

I was told that Olive oil was great and wouldnt irritate - truth to tell Im still working myself up towards doing it!!! Big bump keeps getting in the way. Typical DH - as soon as he heard/read he was all for giving it a go... but I told him to keep his fingers to himself.

babyOcho Tue 29-Sep-09 13:31:02

DP did the massage for me, it wasnt very nice for either of us blush

Dont know whether it helped or not as I had an episiotmay (sp).

alana39 Tue 29-Sep-09 13:33:14

Not sure you need to start so early, most stuff I've read suggest just for the last 4-6 weeks with any vegetable oil [couldn't ever bring myself to do it emoticon]

TakeLovingChances Tue 29-Sep-09 13:37:04

Hi, I'm not sure exactly which cream is best, but I know that Mothercare sell a cream for perineal massage. Don't know if it's any good as I'm only 18 weeks and haven't started to use anything yet.

LionstarBigPants Tue 29-Sep-09 13:43:45

We used Wheatgerm oil from Neal's Yard (yes DP did the business end - I couldn't reach!). I think most 'edible' oils would be OK. It was great for massaging into the bump too - no stretch marks smile.

Sadly didn't prevent me tearing, but I think that was down to DS massive head (he was 9lbs 5oz!). At least it wasn't a 3rd degree tear like the first time (and hence the massage)

minimoonumbertwo Tue 29-Sep-09 13:44:19

I did it but it was horrible & not sure whether it actually did any good...

cakeaddict Tue 29-Sep-09 13:56:58

I used an oil from the body shop - think it was almond oil, but just ask for unscented massage oil - you needn't explain where it's for!!

I did it last time and escaped with barely a graze 'down there'. Not sure whether or not that was a consequence of the massage, but I'll be doing it again this time around, though as others have said I think it's only supposed to be done from around 34-35 weeks. I founds standing with one foot up on the side of the bath and approaching the nether regions from behind was the best way to do it myself without needing any help!

blushes Tue 29-Sep-09 15:07:09

Phew am quite glad to hear I don't need to start doing it yet!

I thought it would be a case of a bit of stroking and kneading (sounds quite nice blush), not the hardcore stretching it seems to involve.

But I am keen to do what I can not to tear, huge-headed baby notwithstanding.

I'm also planning on having a waterbirth and heard that this can help... any further thoughts?

Thanks for the tips

ourraquel Tue 29-Sep-09 15:25:09

I did it last time with almond oil, religiously from about 30 weeks. Didn't do any hardcore stretching though, that sounds horrid. As if we don't have enough discomfort in our lives. The thing is though, my perineum remained intact, but I just tore 'the other way' instead (right the way to what I'll just call my most, er, sensitive area) and it was bloody murder. So I don't know whether it actually did any good, really. Will probably still do it again this time round though, just for the hell of it.

Just as important as massage, and I wish someone had mentioned this to me (I bet you all know, but I didn't), is practicing relaxing your pelvic floor muscles. I didn't actually ever think about how to do this, so when I had to push my dd out, I just sort of - clenched. Probably hence the torn lady parts.

blushes Tue 29-Sep-09 15:40:50

Oh bloody hell (literally) ourracquel, that sounds horrible!
Good point re relaxing pelvic floor. I've read that being relaxed is absolutely key to staying intact and generally reducing pain. Hence my leanings towards waterbirth. Warm water has got to help with that, surely?

Actually is quite hard to relax your pelvic floor, am trying as I type blush

ourraquel Tue 29-Sep-09 16:05:47

Careful with that, blushes... I sometimes try practicing on the bus but you have to be fairly secure in your (whispers) bladder control. Actually, I've been doing the Tara Lee prenatal yoga dvd and she mentions relaxing your pelvic floor and actually gets you to practice. Which obviously came as a surprise to me: 'oh what, you don't just practice clenching them the whole time? crikey. maybe that's where i went wrong last time...'.

Warm water would absolutely definitely help, and I'd also recommend a go on the old Tara Lee. It also has a 'visualisation' which is ace for making you fall asleep on the living room floor.

docket Tue 29-Sep-09 16:10:08

My yoga teacher is very into perineal message and mentions it constantly. Not sure I can bring myself to do it, I did try with DC1 and didn't much like it.

One thing she did stress is that you can overdo it and that it is only recommended from c. 34+ weeks. So probably best to wait a bit?

suburbansweetheart Tue 29-Sep-09 17:06:38

Don't know if will help at the birth, but think perineal massage / letting someone touch me 'down there' (even though was only dh)has helped me to relax those muscles when necessary. Had transvaginal scan the other day and don't think I would have coped otherwise.

hippychick66 Tue 29-Sep-09 17:08:56

ourraquel You poor thing. What a place to tear. I do remember with my first son (who has a bloody big head) that there was a point during the pushing stage when I shouted, "I think my cli..... is gonna rip!" Thank god it didn't though. We are mad arn't we - would a man risk something like that happening to him?? grin

blushes Tue 29-Sep-09 17:12:39

As a first timer, this thread is making me feel all I-am-woman-hear-me-roar and very wibbly, at the same time!

God surely women can cope with anything after childbirth?

hippychick66 Tue 29-Sep-09 17:50:50

Do you mean first timer as in first pregnancy or first timer as in on mumsnet??

If it's the first one then please don't panic and don't let me scare you.

Despite the experience I explained before, I went through the whole thing again 3 years later and am hoping (fingers crossed) that I might get to do it again.

If I do manage to get pregnant again, the birth is one of the things I'm looking forward to ... (this is the bit where people hit me over the head with heavy objects!) I know mad or what. It's just such a wonderful feeling to meet your baby for the first time. I had to be cut with my first baby and tore with my second (what the heck can I expect from the third??) It's my own fault I should have looked at the size of DH's head when we first met and worked it out for myself - grin.

InmyheadIminParis Tue 29-Sep-09 18:44:28

I was given lots of advice about this in France - they're very big on perineal whatsits there (both massage and 're-education' after the birth). Sweet Almond oil was always what was recommended. Like you, I react badly to soaps, etc and was a bit worried - but no problems at all with the almond oil.
Okay - next question - has anyome managed to find anywhere that does perineal re-education in the uk?

AnnTwacky Tue 29-Sep-09 19:09:12

My perineum enrolled in the Open University.

Snowtiger Tue 29-Sep-09 19:37:53

Don't be downhearted Blushes, it can work!
I used normal olive oil, followed instructions from Gentle Birth Method book and didn't tear at all with DS, not one tiny weeny bit. All intact. Was astonished, as was midwife.

Feckin pelvic floor's buggered though, one cough and my knickers are soaked. Stylish eh.

ButtercupWafflehead Tue 29-Sep-09 19:41:54

Is anyone please able to give us broad instructions without getting all flushed?

ButtercupWafflehead Tue 29-Sep-09 19:47:35

...don't make me google! - I don't really want it to appear on my browsing history, (and who knows what sites will come up hmm

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