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If you live in Wasilla and are expecting a baby, congratulations! This is an exciting period in your life whether it is your first or your fifth child!
While this is a time for joyful celebration, it can also be a time of sheer frustration! In addition to morning sickness and an aversion to certain smells, studies show that a minimum of 50% and as much as 90% of women will experience prenatal back pain at some point in their pregnancy.
The mother’s body must make structural adaptations as her center-of-gravity changes and her weight increases. This changing distribution of load causes spinal dysfunction and puts pressure on the sacroiliac joints.
As much as 77% of women also complain of low back pain after giving birth. Some studies believe this is due to the misalignment of the sacroiliac joints.
The good news for pregnant women or new mothers with back pain, is that you can prevent most of it or find pregnancy back pain relief by following these simple prevention methods.
If these should fail, your Wasilla chiropractor can be a partner in helping you find relief from the common pains and problems associated with pregnancy.
Most back pain during pregnancy is in the second or third trimester. A few women even experience pain in their first trimester!
While chiropractic care is extremely safe, there are a few circumstances where it would not be wise for a pregnant woman to see a chiropractor. Some of these circumstances include:
Always speak to your doctor and get their approval before seeking chiropractic care.
It absolutely is. While all chiropractors receive prenatal training, some doctors specialize in prenatal chiropractic care. When looking for a pregnancy chiropractor near you, ask your doctor for a referral or ask if the chiropractor you are considering has received specialized training in this area.
Your Wasilla chiropractor has a special table for pregnant women. It is very adjustable and has a cut out for your belly so there is no additional pressure placed on the baby. This means that your chiropractor can help you right through your third trimester!
There certainly is!
When your pelvis is out of alignment, it can limit the amount of space that your baby has. These “cramped quarters” can also prevent your baby from moving and growing more freely.
This misalignment can also lead to a more difficult delivery. Imagine trying to get out of a half-closed door! When the pelvis is in its proper position, your baby can move into a natural position. This means a reduced risk of having a breech birth.
Studies have also found that women who get regular chiropractic care, including chiropractic massage, have shorter labor and delivery times! Who doesn’t want that?!
Maybe we should have called these “perfectly sane” ways, but you get the idea. Most women think prenatal back pain is just something they must live with, but this isn’t true.
This might not be popular with younger mom-to-be, but even if you aren’t feeling back pain now, we can guarantee you will shortly and those heels, while cute, we admit, aren’t helping you. In fact, they can be downright dangerous.
As your tummy grows, your weight increases, and your center of balance changes, it can be quite easy to lose your balance wearing high heels, yes, even wedges. There are multiple reports online about pregnant women wearing wedges who have broken their ankles as they lost their balance.
Kick those heels to the back of the closet for now and opt for flats or tennis shoes. You will be more “grounded”, and your choice of footwear can help to prevent back pain.
If your back hurts, you need bed rest, right? This might be true in some cases, but not if you are having a normal pregnancy.
While it sounds a bit counterintuitive, exercise is one of the best things you can do for your pregnancy. While you shouldn’t take up marathon training (unless you were doing that before you became pregnant) mild-to-moderate exercise can keep muscles flexible and strong, preventing back pain and making your overall pregnancy experience easier.
If your additional weight hurts your feet or ankles, try swimming or water aerobics. Walking is always great exercise and indoor cycling can help to burn calories to keep your weight down. Yoga is also recommended although you will probably need to adjust some poses or change a few around to fit your growing belly.
Any type of exercise will be good for you and the baby. There will be plenty of time for you to lie in bed and binge watch Orange is the New Black.
This one isn’t really insane unless you count the thousands of pregnant women screaming “YES!” at this suggestion.
When you see your Wasilla chiropractor for your adjustments, chances are he will also recommend a chiropractic massage. Research shows that regular massage therapy reduces anxiety, relieves back and joint pain, and can even make labor and delivery easier.
Not only is massage therapy a terrific way to take care of both you and your unborn child, but your insurance might even cover the costs! Many insurance companies recognize the benefits of massage therapy and will pay for it when you get a prescription from your obstetrician. Ask your Wasilla chiropractor about this. They can check with your insurance company regarding coverage.
Darn our mothers for always being right! Practicing good posture is a great way to prevent back and neck pain at any stage of life, but as your center-of-gravity shifts due to your growing baby, you can overcompensate by trying to lean backward and this will put a strain on your lower back.
Try to remember the 4 rules of good posture:
Many women find that taking a larger stance helps to maintain their balance. If you will be standing for a long period of time, find something to rest one of your feet on, such as a low step stool or a few stacked books. Don’t forget to alternate your feet and take frequent breaks if you must stand.
Good posture still applies when sitting. Use a small pillow to support your lower back and don’t let your shoulders or head slump forward.
We can hear that same group “YES!” again. Some women believe baths are a no-no when pregnant, but this isn’t true. Warm baths, not hot baths, are perfectly fine. In fact, you see more birthing centers and hospitals offering birth tubs for women because warm water is a natural muscle relaxant and pain reliever.
Be sure to keep the water no warmer than 100 degrees. You can also alternate between cold and warm if it soothes your back. Use a covered ice pack for 10 minutes while you wait for the tub to fill, then relax in a warm tub for 10-30 minutes. You can reapply ice again after you cool down if it helps to ease the pain.
Increasingly women are discovering that what mainstream medicine calls “alternative methods” or “complementary therapies” are actually just as effective, if not more so, than other types of traditional therapies.
Your chiropractor is one of the best sources of “alternative” therapies that you can rely on. It is safe and effective, and pregnant women find that not only do chiropractic adjustments ease back pain, but it helps them have a more comfortable pregnancy, control nausea, and ease the aches and pain common in pregnant women, including the feet, neck, and hips.
Don’t be nervous about chiropractic adjustments while you are pregnant. Your body begins to make hormones at this time which cause the joints to loosen up, to prepare you for giving birth. This means that the doctor will only need to use the lightest of pressure to place your spine and pelvis back into its proper position.
Your Wasilla chiropractor can also offer you advice on stretching and strengthening exercises that are safe for you and the baby, so you can have an easier time with delivery. Chiropractic care can even help prevent breech births in your last trimester using a method called the Webster technique.
There are zero cases of complications or problems arising from pregnant women who receive chiropractic care. In fact, the opposite is true. Check online and you will find thousands of testimonials from women who discovered that chiropractic care not only helped to relieve and prevent back pain but helped them have easier deliveries as well.
Dr. Brent Wells has been a trusted chiropractor since moving his family from Oregon to Alaska back in 1998 and founded Better Health Chiropractic & Physical Rehab – B.S. from Univ. of Nevada, Doctorate from Western States Chiropractic College, volunteer for Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Foundation, and member of the American Chiropractic Association. As a chiropractor his focus is on family, including his 3 children and wife of 20+ years, his clinics, and ongoing education.