Even the smoothest pregnancies are accompanied by aches and pains and back pain is very common. In fact, an estimated 50-80% of pregnant women experience back pain at some time during their pregnancy. While the pain can range from mild to severe, women who suffer from pre-existing back problems are at a higher risk for more acute back pain or pain that begins earlier in the pregnancy. Finding effective options for pregnancy pain management are vital to expectant mothers.
There are typically two types of back pain that occur during pregnancy: lumbar, or lower back pain, and posterior pelvic pain. Lumbar pain is felt at or above the waist in the center of the back and can sometimes be accompanied by pain that radiates into the legs. This type of pain is similar to lower back pain non-pregnant women feel and is increased by prolonged sitting, standing or lifting. Posterior pelvic pain is a deep pain, felt below and to the side of the waistline or below the waistline on either side across the tailbone. Posterior pelvic pain can extend down into the back of the thighs but typically does not radiate below the knees. Posterior pelvic pain can be brought on by any number of activities including climbing stairs, lifting or twisting, bending forward or rising from seated position and even walking or running. Posterior pelvic pain, unlike lumbar pain, is not necessarily prevented or lessened by a high fitness level in the patient.
Access to non-surgical or drug-free care is incredibly important to expectant mothers and there are a number of exercises that promote and support proper posture, which is essential to alleviating unwanted pregnancy back pain. Chiropractic care provides a non-invasive treatment alternative that has proven effective for not only lower back pain and posterior pelvic pain, but also shoulder tension, headaches and sciatica. The positioning of the pelvis is one of the most important areas to consider for a smooth labor and delivery. Adjustments that aim to establish balance in the woman’s pelvis have been shown to reduce breech births and allow for optimal fetal positioning. Optimal fetal positioning at the time of birth also eliminates the potential for difficult labor, resulting in safer and easier delivery for both mother and baby.
According to the American Pregnancy Association, additional benefits for expectant mothers that can be achieved through Chiropractic care include:
- Maintaining a healthier pregnancy
- Controlling nausea
- Reducing labor and delivery time
- Relief of back, neck and joint pain
- Prevention of potential need for cesarean delivery
As a woman’s body changes through pregnancy, there are several changes and conditions that occur that can lead to misaligned joints or spine including pelvis changes and increased curve in the back as a result of a growing abdomen. Keeping the spine aligned helps the entire body work more effectively and enables the nervous system to effectively communicate to all the body systems. For more information on Chiropractic care during pregnancy, please click here to visit the American Pregnancy Association’s website. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Marc Ellis at the Georgia Chiropractic Neurology Center, please call 770-664-4288.