Visiting a chiropractor while pregnant is becoming more and more common as many OB/GYNs become more open to the concept. Today, doctors are now referring their patients for adjustments to treat pregnancy related back pain.
During pregnancy, our body secretes hormones that help relax the body. Without these hormones, our pelvis would not be able to expand wide enough to allow the birth of the baby. When you add the increase in weight, shift in center of gravity and the change in biomechanics (due to the disproportionate amount of weight that is being distributed to the front), it is no wonder that pregnant women are prone to back pain. Most often, during pregnancy, low back pain is a result of vertebral dislocations and muscle spasm. A partial vertebral dislocation is the misalignment of a bone in your spine. Partial dislocations cause muscle spasm and stress on the spine and nerves. The Chiropractic adjustment is a specific amount of force applied to the misaligned joint in order to fix its position and function.
Lower back pain is one of the most common reasons that pregnant women seek chiropractic care. The degree of pain ranges from barely noticeable to excruciating, with jolting or shooting pain into the legs and buttocks. Pain in the mid-back becomes more frequent as the chest become denser from lactation. Many women also seek the help of chiropractic care for headaches and migraines. Most headaches are caused or aggravated by partial dislocations in the cervical spine or neck. Fluxes of hormones can also contribute to headache occurrence. Women, who suffer migraines and were taking medication before becoming pregnant, often look to chiropractors for relief, since they can no longer take the medication. Many patients actually find that the chiropractic adjustments are more effective than the medications.
Aside from providing ‘symptom relief’, receiving chiropractic care during pregnancy has some other benefits for yourself, your baby and upcoming labor. The uterus is supported by ligaments that are attached to the pelvis. If the bones in your pelvis are partially dislocated, it can put tension on those ligaments. This can cause a decrease in space in the uterus, as well as, in the pelvis ring. It is very important to ensure that the pelvis is aligned properly for it to allow optimal opening during labor. Women who have undergone chiropractic adjustments while being pregnant report that their labors are easier and less stressful on their bodies.
Many ‘side effects’ of pregnancy can be reduced with just a few chiropractic adjustments . . . lower back pain, leg cramps, mid-back pain, neck pain, headaches, carpal tunnel symptoms, and even nausea. If you are suffering from any of these symptoms, do not ‘grin and bear it’. Find a renown chiropractor in your area, who is trained in caring for pregnant women, and set up an appointment as soon as possible!